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Scarlet Mormon

Papilio deiphobus rumanzovia


A series of the stages of the Scarlet Swallowtail or Scarlet Mormon butterfly. The caterpillar mimics the head of a small green snake and releases a reddish extension called osmeterium when disturbed or troubled which also mimics the tongue of a snake. The osmeterium also releases a foul smell. The Scarlet Mormon is an endemic species of the Philippines but are sometimes seen as vagrants in neighboring countries.


Lightly wooded terrain on citrus trees but most especially oranges and limes.


At first I thought it was a Common Mormon until the butterfly came out :3

No species ID suggestions


len_niel 2 years ago

Thanks. Actually I do think so too, I just assumed its polytes because I've been exposed to the species when I was a child, it's the most familiar to me. But that was a long time ago I could not tell if it is polytes or some other Papilio species. I'm a bit lost hehe. Oh by the way, I still have the pupa and it's progressing well. I've been anticipating. Anyways, I will edit this spotting when the butterfly comes out.

NuwanChathuranga 2 years ago

Nice series! i don't think this caterpillar is Papilio polytes, some other Papilio species.. if you still have the pupa, please see what's coming out!

Sorsogon City, Sorsogon, Philippines

Lat: 13.02, Long: 124.05

Spotted on Aug 22, 2013
Submitted on Sep 3, 2013

Spotted for mission

Related spottings

Paris Peacock Old World Swallowtail lime butterfly -  Papilio demoleus Macaón (Old World swallowtail)

Nearby spottings

Common Bluebottle or Blue Triangle Ramburi Red Parasol Golden Apple Snail Eggs Geometrid Moth