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Spicebush Swallowtail 
Latin Name: Papilio troilus
 
Genus: Papilio    Species: troilus 
Family
Latin Name: Papilionidae
Common Name: Swallowtails
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Family Members
 
SubFamily
Latin Name: Papilioninae
Common Name: Swallowtails
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SubFamily Members

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Comments:
The Spicebush Swallowtail is one of four Florida butterflies that mimic the unpalatable Pipevine Swallowtail to gain protection from predators. Adults are strong, agile fliers but rarely stray far from their preferred woodland habitat and are infrequent in urban locations. A true lover of flowers, they readily venture out into nearby open areas in search of nectar and continuously flutter their wings while feeding. The larvae make individual shelters by curling up both edges of a leaf with silk. They rest motionless inside when not actively feeding. At maturity, the larvae turn yellow and wander in search of an appropriate site to pupate.
   
Life Cycle:
Broods:
multiple generations
Egg:
cream, laid singly on the underside of host leaves
Larva:
green above, reddish below with enlarged thorax, two false eyespots and several longitudinal rows of blue spots
Host Plants:
Sassafras, Camphor-tree, Red Bay and Spicebush
   
Host Plants:
Host Plants:
Sassafras, Camphor-tree, Red Bay and Spicebush
   
Habitat:
Habitat:
woodlands, forest edges, wooded swamps, pastures, old fields and suburban gardens
   
     
     
   
Wingspan:
Inches:
3.5 - 5
Centimeters:
8.9 - 12.7
   
Appearance:
Sexes:
similar, female has duller hindwing scaling
Compare:
Pipevine Swallowtail lacks submarginal greenish blue spots.
   
     
     
Markings:
 

Above:

  • black with a row of large, pale greenish blue spots along the margin; hindwings have greenish blue scaling, a single, orange eyespot and a large orange spot along the leading margin  
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Below:

  • black with postmedian band of blue scaling bordered by row of yellow-orange spots on each side; abdomen black with longitudinal rows of light spots  
 
Florida Distribution:
Abundance:
occasional
   

 

     

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Map Legend: Resident (green) | Stray (Red)


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