Black Swallowtail – 5/6/23
Observer: Paul Lauenstein
Observation Date: 5/6/23
Observation Time: 9:45 a.m.
Observation Location: Moose Hill Audubon Wildlife Sanctuary
Common Name: Black Swallowtail butterfly
Scientific Name: Papilio polyxenes
Comments: I was surprised to see this black swallowtail butterfly so early in the season. It was feeding on the blossoms of a flowering tree near the barn on the Billings Loop.
Black swallowtail butterflies look a lot like spicebush swallowtail butterflies. You can learn how to tell the difference between a black swallowtail and a spicebush swallowtail at: http://www.naba.org/chapters/nabambc/frames-2species.asp?sp1=Papilio-polyxenes&sp2=Papilio-troilus
There is also a good discussion of how to tell the differences among four black butterfly species at: http://louisiananaturalist.blogspot.com/2009/06/four-dark-swallowtails.html
More Information: Butterflies and Moths of North America