Catching the fleeting scenes of many splendored life with a camera.
'Look closely. The beautiful may be small' — Kant

15 September 2012

Scarce Swallowtail and Tiger Swallowtail Butterflies

Scarce Swallowtail (Iphiclides podalirius), aka Sail Swallowtail or Pear-tree Swallowtail, is a Palearctic swallowtail butterfly found in gardens, fields and open woodlands. It is widespread throughout Europe with the exception of the northern parts. Its habitat extends northwards to Saxony and central Poland and eastwards across Asia Minor and Transcaucasia as far as the Arabian peninsula, India, and western China.
The Southern Swallowtail (Iphiclides feisthamelii) is a butterfly found in Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia.
Honestly, I'm not sure which one is which and how to tell them apart, so I put both names in the captions.

Scarce Swallowtail (Iphiclides podalirius)on a pomegranate twig
Scarce Swallowtail (Iphiclides podalirius) / Southern Swallowtail (Iphiclides feisthamelii) on a pomegranate twig.
(© 2012 LightColourShade. All rights reserved)

Scarce Swallowtail (Iphiclides podalirius) / Southern Swallowtail (Iphiclides feisthamelii) on a pomegranate twig
Scarce Swallowtail (Iphiclides podalirius) or Southern Swallowtail (Iphiclides feisthamelii) on a pomegranate twig. (© 2012 LightColourShade. All rights reserved)

Scarce Swallowtail (Iphiclides podalirius) on a pomegranate twig close-up
Scarce Swallowtail (Iphiclides podalirius) / Southern Swallowtail (Iphiclides feisthamelii) close-up
(© 2012 LightColourShade. All rights reserved)

The Eastern Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio glaucus) is a species of swallowtail butterfly native to North America, common in many different habitats.
I think this one is female.

Tiger swallowtail butterfly close-up
Female Tiger Swallowtail butterfly (Papilio Machaon Mauretanica) close-up
(© 2012 LightColourShade. All rights reserved)

Tiger swallowtail butterfly
Tiger swallowtail (Papilio Machaon Mauretanica) female on a pink flower
(© 2012 LightColourShade. All rights reserved)

4 comments:

  1. As always, you've made an absolutely magnificent post. The pictures are wonderful, and your comments make them memorable.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks a lot. Swallowtails are large, colourful and some of the most beautiful butterflies in the world. Most of them are tropical, but they can be found almost everywhere. I always felt there was something magical about them.

      Delete
  2. Your first butterfly is the Scarce Swallowtail. The Southern looks quite different, here is a southern: http://en.butterflycorner.net/typo3temp/pics/1e9aca2ef5.jpg

    Your second is Papilio machaon. Papilio glaucus is, as you say, a North American species and it has stripes (much like the Scarce Swallowtail) not like the butterfly you have.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're right about the second one, it's Papilio Machaon Mauretanica. However I'm not sure about the Scarce swallowtail -- Southern Swallowtail (Iphiclides feisthamelii) is often considered a subspecies of Scarce Swallowtail (Iphiclides podalirius); I did a lot of research and it seems the only difference between them consists in colour scale: Iphiclides feisthamelii has more yellowish background colour and the tail spot is redder compared to Iphiclides podalirius.

      Delete

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