Eastern Tiger Swallowtail

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail

The eastern tiger swallowtail (Papilio glaucus), is a species of swallowtail butterfly native to eastern North America. It is one of the most familiar butterflies in the eastern United States, where it is common in many different habitats.


General Information

The butterfly flies from spring to fall, during which time it produces up to three broods.

Common NameEastern Tiger Swallowtail
Scientific NamePapilio glaucus
Common Places FoundNew England to the Great Lakes & south to Florida & into Texas
Woodlands, meadows, suburbs, cities
Plants & TreesButterfly – nectar; love pink & purple flowers like phlox & milkweed
Caterpillar – tree leaves




Identifying the Eastern Tiger Swallowtail 

Male

The male is always yellow with some blue coloring and four black “tiger stripes” on each forewing (thus giving the butterfly its name.)


Female Black Morph

Females come in two varieties. The black morph is a shiny black with blue and white speckling and flecking.

A similar look-alike is the Black Swallowtail.


Female Yellow

The female yellows can be the same bright coloring as the males or a dull yellow boarding a dirty brown. They will have more blue coloring on their wings than males.

Additional Reads:
Black Swallowtail Butterfly
Banded Woolybear Caterpillar
Feeding & Attracting Butterflies


Butterfly Houses


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Lifecycle

Eggs

Females butterflies lay one single egg on leaves and it takes 5-7 days for the caterpillars to hatch.


Caterpillars

The caterpillars go through five growth stages. In the first stage, the caterpillars are brown and white and look like bird droppings. The coloring helps the caterpillars hide from the birds that love to eat them.

As the caterpillar ages, they grow up to two inches in length and become a pale green with false eyespots, appearing like a green snake.


Defense Mechanism

The osmeteria are displayed when the caterpillar is threatened. They are scent organs that emit a foul odor to repel ants, mantids, spiders.


Feeding Butterflies


Caterpillar Pupating

In at the Fifth instar, shortly before pupating. 

The caterpillar takes on different appearances as it grows, each time shedding its skin.

Additional Posts:
Tell The Male & Female Monarch Butterflies Apart
Butterfly Nectar Recipe
Lifecycle of a Monarch
Recycled Spoon Garden Butterfly 
Flowers That Attract Hummingbirds & Butterflies


The Chrysalis

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The chrysalis varies from a whitish color to dark brown.

They always blend into their surroundings and are well hidden.  Hibernation occurs in this stage in locations with cold winter month


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Additional Posts


Designs With Images

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