pipevine swallowtail (Battus philenor)
CONFIRMATION STATUS: Confirmed.
FAMILY: Parnassians and Swallowtails (Papilionidae)
SUBFAMILY: Swallowtails (Papilioninae)
IDENTIFICATION: Upper surface of hindwing iridescent blue or blue-
green. Underside of hindwing with submarginal row of 7 round orange
spots in iridescent blue field.
LIFE HISTORY: Adult males patrol likely habitat in search of receptive
females. Females lay batches of eggs on underside of host plant leaves.
Caterpillars feed in small groups when young but become solitary when
older. Wintering is by the chrysalis.
FLIGHT: In the East and California, adults fly primarily in late spring
and summer, but the butterfly is commoner in late summer and fall in
the South and Southwest. Where lack of freezing temperatures permit,
adults may fly continuously. In lowland tropical Mexico they may be
found in any month.
WING SPAN: 2 3/4 - 5 inches (7 - 13 cm).
CATERPILLAR HOSTS: Pipevines (Aristolochia species), including
Aristolochia californica, Aristolochia serpentaria and others.
ADULT FOOD: Solely nectar from flowers including thistles (Cirsium
species), bergamot, lilac, viper's bugloss, common azaleas, phlox, teasel,
azaleas, dame's-rocket, lantana, petunias, verbenas, lupines, yellow star
thistle, California buckeye, yerba santa, brodiaeas, and gilias.
HABITAT: A wide variety of open habitats, open woodland, and wood-
RANGE: Rare stray to Canada (s. Manitoba). Tropical lowlands south to
CONSERVATION: Normally not of high conservation concern, although
states at northern limits have listed under state law. These listings are
of dubious value where species is not a permanent resident.
NATURESERVE GLOBAL STATUS: G5 - Demonstrably secure glob-
ally, though it may be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the
MANAGEMENT NEEDS: Management of habitats to ensure survival
of host plant colonies is the only possible concern.
SKY MEADOWS OCCURRENCE:
Note: Due to seasonal conditions in this region, occurrence may vary from
year to year. The designation of occurrence may range over two or more
categories and may vary even during a single season.
Key to Checklist
A Abundant: Easy to see very large numbers of individuals in appropriate habitat
at proper time of year.
C Common: Usually each to see good numbers of individuals in appropriate habitat
at proper time of year.
U Uncommon: Sometimes found in appropriate habitat and proper time of year,
usually in low numbers.
O Occasional: Found in appropriate habitat perhaps only a few times a year, usually
in low numbers.
R Rare: Small chance of being found, even in appropriate habitat at proper time of
year. There are few individuals and may not be present every year.
X Extirpated: Formerly present, no longer occurs in Sky Meadows Park.
Calendar of Events
Sky Meadows Park
Crooked Run Valley