Butterflies and moths are insects that scientists call Lepidoptera, meaning, “scale winged” in Greek. They get this name from the tiny scales covering their wings and body. Like all insects, Lepidoptera have a hard outer covering called an exoskeleton, which is divided into sections and has joints so the animal can move. Also like other insects, moths and butterflies have six legs, a head, a thorax, and an abdomen.
Butterflies and moths are second only to beetles as the largest group of animals in the world. Even with the 165,000 species of butterflies and moths that have been described, there are still an estimated 100,000 species that have not. There are 125 Lepidoptera families and about 12 times as many moths as butterflies − approximately 240,000 moths and 20,000 butterflies.