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Black Swallowtail Butterfly
Papilionidae
Papilio polyxenes
Type: Insect

Effect: Neutral
heidbenati
heidbenati

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Papilionidae
Swallowtail Butterflies
Papilionoidea
Butterflies
Rhopalocera
Macrolepidoptera
Large Moths
Obtectomera
Apoditrysia
Larger Moths Butterflies
Ditrysia
Two Openings
Heteroneura
Butterlies Moths
Glossata
Coil Tounge
Lepidoptera
Moths Butterflies
Endopterygota
Metamorphosis
Neoptera
New Wings
Pterygota
Winged
Dicondylia
Pre-Winged Insects
Insecta
Insects
Hexapoda
Six Legs
Arthropoda
Jointed Feet
Ecdysozoa
Molting
Protostomia
Mouth First
Bilateria
Two-Way Symmetry
Eumetazoa
True Higher Animals
Animalia
Animals
Eukaryota
Eukaryota
Cells with a Nucleus


Papilionidae Family
Papilio Genus


Location / Where this Creature is found:

Brazil

General information about Black Swallowtail Butterfly :

The Black Swallowtail, Papilio polyxenes, also called the American or parsnip swallowtail[1], is a butterfly found throughout much of North America. It is the state butterfly of Oklahoma. There is an extremely similar-appearing species, Papilio joanae that occurs in the Ozark Mountains region, but it appears to be closely related to Papilio machaon, rather than polyxenes.

The Black Swallowtail has a wingspan of 3 1 4 inches to 4 1 4 inches (8 to 11 centimeters). The upper surface of the wings is mostly black. On the inner edge of hindwing is a black spot centered in larger orange spot. A male of this species has a yellow band near edge of wings; a female has row of yellow spots. The hindwing of the female has an iridescent blue band.

In the Southwest USA, yellow forms predominate in the subspecies Papilio polyxenes coloro.

After mating, small, yellow eggs are laid, typically on garden plants from the carrot family, including dill, fennel, Queen Anne's lace, and parsley. They are also found eating bishop's weed. First instar larvae grow to about 1.5 cm (0.6 inch) long, resemble bird droppings and are dark black with a white band in the middle and have spikes, with a light brown-orange ring at the base of each of the spikes in the dark region (spikes are white on the white band). Later instars grow to about 5 cm (2 inches) and are yellow-white and black banded with yellow spots around every second black band. They have short, black spikes around some of the black bands, although these tend to disappear as the larva nears pupation.

The Black Swallowtail Caterpillar has an orange "forked gland", called the osmeterium. When in danger the osmeterium, which looks like a snake's tongue, everts and releases a foul smell to repel predators.

The Black Swallowtail pupae may be green or brown, but not depending on its surroundings or what it has pupated on. The color of the chrysalis is determined by a local genetic balance which ensures that majority of pupae will blend in.



Black Swallowtail Butterfly
Black Swallowtail Butterfly - November 23, 2009

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