Tiger Swallow-Tail Butterfly
- Family name: Papilionidae/Swallowtails
- General description: Male wings yellow with prominent black tiger-like stripes and wide black borers; hindwings with yellow marginal spots and single black tail. Thorax and abdomen yellow with black stripes. Female has two forms. Yellow form as male but with increased blue scaling in black hindwing border. Dark form black or with faint stripes; hindwing with blue scaling and yellow marginal spots. Ventral hindwing with faint darker stripes.
- Field Marks: Male: single hindwing tail; yellow wings with black stripes and borders; abdomen with black lateral stripe Female: hindwing with blue scaling in black border; dark-form female black with faint darker stripes, most noticeable on ventral hindwing
- Sexes: appear different
- Wingspan: 85-140 mm
- Life Cycle: Egg: green, spherical, laid singly on host leaves Mature larva: Green with rows of small blue spots; thorax enlarged with two prominent yellow-rimmed black eyespots and a narrow black and yellow transverse band. Chrysalis: mottled gray-brown
- Number of Generations: Three or more
- Flight Season: February-November
- Abundance: Common
- Habitat: Woodlands, forest margins, broadleaf swamps, waterways, parks, gardens, roadsides, pastures, and meadows
- Counties: Alachua, Baker, Bay, Bradford, Brevard, Broward, Calhoun, Charlotte, Citrus, Clay, Collier, Columbia, De Soto, Dixie, Duval, Escambia, Flagler, Franklin, Gadsden, Gilchrist, Glades, Gulf, Hamilton, Hardee, Hendry, Hernando, Highlands, Hillsborough, Holmes, Indian River, Jackson, Jefferson, Lafayette, Lake, Lee, Leon, Levy, Liberty, Madison, Manatee, Marion, Martin, Miami-Dade, Monroe, Nassau, Okaloosa, Okeechobee, Orange, Osceola, Palm Beach, Pasco, Pinellas, Polk, Putnam, Santa Rosa, Sarasota, Seminole, St. Johns, St. Lucie, Sumter, Suwannee, Taylor, Union, Volusia, Wakulla, Walton, Washington
- Larval Host Plants: Wild cherry (Prunus serotina), sweet bay (Magnolia virginiana), white ash (Fraxinus americana)
- Similar Species: No similar species
- Additional Information: Adults have high somewhat gliding flight and feed with their wings outstretched (not continuously fluttering).
Tiger Swallowtail ButterflyMy Home: I am found throughout North America,
from Canada all the way to Mexico.
What I eat: As a caterpillar, I am a very picky
eater and usually will only eat leaves from the
wild cherry or tulip trees. As an adult I will drink
the nectar from flowers.
What I look like: My wings are four to five inches
in width, four inches in height and are usually yellow
and black striped. I have a long thin black body with two
How I am born: I will go through four stages of development:
egg, caterpillar, chrysalis (cocoon), and adult (butterfly).
My egg is laid on or close to a cherry or tulip tree. I hatch from
the egg and become a caterpillar for a few weeks. After eating
most of the time and getting bigger, I form a chrysalis
(cocoon). I will emerge as a butterfly in a few weeks.
two wing tails that hang down at the
bottom of their wings. Often, they will lose one of
their wing 'tails' to a predatory bird, but they can still fly