Oregon Swallowtail (Papilio oregonius)
The Oregon swallowtail is a very colorful and spectacular
Description and Identification
The larva is of a medium size with black and yellow markings. However, they begin turning more and more whiter, as they grow older.
The chrysalis is dull or blackish green in color with the lower part divided into segments, with a single string of silk balancing the entire body with the lower tip as a support, attached to the branch of its host plant.
Sexual Dimorphism: Not present
Color and Appearance: When the wings are open, they display concave spots with a bright orange-red eyespot close to the lower border. There are beige yellow markings and patterns on a black base on all the four wings, along with a characteristic tail common to all swallowtail butterflies. When the wings are closed, the underside shows almost a similar pattern like the upper side, but is mostly ruled by the beige coloration in a relatively fainter version.
Average wingspan: 2.5 to 4 in (6.4 to 10 cm)
Flight pattern: Erratic flight pattern at a moderate speed
Dull reddish white in color, and laid one at a time on the host plant leaf
|Distribution||Mainly in the US states of Oregon, Washington, and Idaho, but also in south-central British Columbia in Canada|
|Habitat||Can be found along the lower sagebrush canyons of the Columbia River and its other tributaries|
|Lifespan of adults||6 to 14 days|
|Host plants||Prefers dragon wormwood or wild tarragon (Artemisia dracunculus)|
|Adult diet||Flower nectar, mostly from thistles, purple sage, balsamroot, phlox, etc.|
Did You Know?
- In 1979, the butterfly was designated the official insect of the US state of Oregon and was also printed on a postage stamp of the country.