Comparison Of Butterflies And Moths
A common classification of the Lepidoptera involves their differentiation into butterflies and moths. Butterflies are a natural monophyletic group, often given the sub-order Rhopalocera, which includes Papilionoidea (true butterflies), Hesperiidae (skippers), and Hedylidae (butterfly moths). In this taxonomic scheme moths belong to the sub-order Heterocera. Other taxonomic schemes have been proposed; the most common putting the butterflies into the sub-order Ditrysia and then the "super-family" Papilionoidea, and ignoring a classification for moths. None of the taxonomic schemes are perfect, however, and taxonomists commonly argue over how to define the obvious differences between butterflies and moths.
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“But the best read naturalist who lends an entire and devout attention to truth, will see that there remains much to learn of his relation to the world, and that it is not to be learned by any addition or subtraction or other comparison of known quantities, but is arrived at by untaught sallies of the spirit, by a continual self-recovery, and by entire humility.”
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