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Orchard Swallowtail Butterfly

Papilio aegeus


Wingspan 105mm. Male is mostly black with narrow white band across forewing; large central pale patch and single red spot on hindwing. Female is larger; extensive pale areas on both wings; row of red spots around edge of hindwing.


Rainforest to woodland. Widespread in northern and eastern Australia. Also New Guinea and other sough-west Pacific islands.


I have photographed the orchard swallowtail pupa, caterpillar and butterfly. It takes four weeks for the caterpillar to mature, ready to turn into a pupa and these ones in my garden are very developed. They have a “Y” shaped gland behind the head, the osmeterium which you can see in both of the above photographs I took. This pops up when the caterpillar senses danger and it is a bright red colour which I also noticed gives off an odour so I wasn’t game to get too close!

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Saturniidae27 2 years ago

The first picture is the orchid swallowtail, while the second one is a tailed emperor butterfly.

maplemoth662 4 years ago

A beautiful caterpillar.... photos no. 3, 4, and 5.

JillBlack 8 years ago


Mona Pirih
Mona Pirih 8 years ago

Very nice series..

LarryGraziano 8 years ago

Hi Leslie, Your Lorikeets continue to be the most popular spotting on Project Noah. We miss seeing you and your wonderful spottings.

AnnvanWijgerden 10 years ago

Wow, beautiful photos! Well done! And thanks for sharing! *Super favorite!* :-)

SusanEllison 10 years ago

beautiful shot!

Brisbane, QLD, Australia

Spotted on Aug 13, 2009
Submitted on Aug 13, 2011

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