black swallowtail butterfly

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Common Name: Black Swallowtail

Scientific Name: Papilio Polyxenes

Wingspan: 6.9–8.4 cm

Location: North America, South America

The Black Swallowtail, also called the American Swallowtail or Parsnip Swallowtail, is a butterfly found throughout much of North America. It is the state butterfly of Oklahoma. The Papilio polyxenes demonstrates polyandry and a lek mating system, showing no male parental care and display sites. Females are therefore able to choose males based on these sites and males are the only resource the females find at these sites. Papilio polyxenes are found from southern Canada through to South America. In North America they are more common east of the Rocky Mountains. They are usually found in open areas like fields, parks, marshes or deserts, and they prefer tropical or temperate habitats.

black swallowtail butterfly PEI

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