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Large black and yellow swallowtail butterfly - the largest butterfly in the USA.
Nectaring on thistle flower in open meadow.
Unfortunately you can't see the 3 or 4 spots and the spiky ones. The range may actually indicated that it is Heraclides cresphontes. And even without an additional view I would say that it is mostly Cresphontes, but only from the range. I once read about sightings in Florida (not Coconut Creek!), but I could not remember at the moment where I got this info from. I also did a little re-search and must admit, that the possibility of been Thoas is not zero, but as well not very high ;-)...
Heraclides (or Papilio) thoas doesn't seem to occur east of the Mississippi River in the USA - this map of North American sightings from butterfliesandmoths.org shows it in the western and central USA only, no farther east than Texas. I wish I had another photo though!http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/speci...
bayucca, this is my only photo, it wouldn't sit still unfortunately. It would be very cool if it were Heraclides thoas! I'm going to ask about it on BugGuide.net, thank you for the suggestion!
I have a faint suspicion that this one might be Heraclides thoas. I know that Cresphontes is in Southern US usually more common than Thoas. But Thoas is also in Florida, Texas, Mexico and further south. For Cresphontes I miss some of the spiky spots. Do you have another picture of this one??
Spotted on Jun 5, 2011 Submitted on May 30, 2012
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