#117 Black Swallowtail Butterfly

117 Black Swallowtail Butterfly (Papilio polyxenes)

25 June

Host plants: Leaves of plants in the parsley family (Apiaceae) including Queen Anne’s Lace, carrot, celery and dill. Sometimes plants in the citrus family (Rutaceae) are preferred. Females lay single eggs on host plants, usually on the new foliage and occasionally on flowers. The eggs stage lasts 4–9 days, the larval stage 10–30 days, and the pupal stage 18 days.

Winter is spent in the chrysalis stage, and adults will emerge in the spring to seek out host plants.[15] Adults will emerge in the mornings on a daily basis. First brood adults will fly from mid-May until late June, second brood adults will fly from early July until late August, and occasionally a partial third brood will occur that will emerge later in the season.

Members of the black swallowtail are long lived compared to other butterflies that inhabit temperate zones. They encounter little predation and are quick and agile if they are disturbed. However, mortality from predators will occur during roosting and during unfavorable weather due to the associated increase in predation. Adult butterflies are at the highest risk for predation when they are incapable of flight or are starved from poor weather. Winter is spent in the chrysalis stage, and adults will emerge in the spring to seek out host plants. Adults will emerge in the mornings on a daily basis. First brood adults will fly from mid-May until late June, second brood adults will fly from early July until late August

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