Butterflies have a long evolutionary history, with fossil evidence dating back to the early Eocene epoch, about 50 million years ago. The earliest known fossils of butterflies are of primitive, moth-like insects that had scales on their wings and bodies, as well as long, feathery antennae.

Over time, butterflies evolved into the diverse group of insects that we know today, with a wide range of physical characteristics and behaviors. The evolution of butterflies was likely influenced by various factors, such as changes in the environment, the availability of food sources, and the presence of predators.

The fossil record of butterflies is relatively scarce, as the delicate nature of their wings and bodies makes them more prone to deterioration over time. However, a number of well-preserved butterfly fossils have been discovered, providing insight into the evolutionary history of these insects.

One of the most famous fossil butterflies is the Eocene-aged Species Archaeoprepona demophon, which was discovered in the Green River Formation in Colorado, USA. This fossil is notable because it exhibits many of the characteristics of modern butterflies, including scales on the wings and body, as well as a proboscis (a long, tube-like mouthpart) for feeding on nectar.

Other notable fossils of butterflies include the Early Cretaceous-aged Prodryas persephone, which was discovered in Canada, and the Late Cretaceous-aged Heterocera electra, which was discovered in France. These fossils provide further evidence of the early evolution of butterflies and their adaptation to different environments over time.

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