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Two-tailed Swallowtail
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Two-Tailed Swallowtail -Arizona

Scientific classification
Kingdom:    Animalia
Phylum:    Arthropoda
Class:    Insecta
Order:    Lepidoptera
Family:    Papilionidae
Subfamily:    Papilioninae
Tribe:    Papilionini
Genus:    Papilio
Species:    P. multicaudata
Binomial name
Papilio multicaudata
WF Kirby, 1884
The Two-Tailed Swallowtail (Papilio multicaudata) is a large North American butterfly. Its appearance is similar to Western and Eastern Tiger Swallowtails, but has thinner and fewer black stripes on the wings and the hind wing has two tails. The Two-Tailed Swallowtail has distinctive yellow wings with a black tiger striping. Each hindwing has several blue markings (top and bottom). The eyespots can fool predators into attacking the rear of the butterfly instead of the head, giving the butterfly a chance to escape. It grows to 2.75 – 5.25 inches in width.

The butterfly can be found throughout Arizona except in the extreme west and southwest (it can also be found in: CA, NM, UT, CO and NV) and typically lives in canyons and cities at lower elevations. Adults fly from late February to mid-November. Host plants include: chokecherry, bitter cherry, Arizona rosewood, single-leaf ash, hoptree and Arizona Sycamore.

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