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Cristian Jensen | all galleries >> Birding in Spain - Best Birding Sites in Spain - Wildlife Photography >> Birds and landscapes from the Ebro Delta Nature Park - Aus del Delta de l'Ebre - Aves y paisajes del Parque del Delta del Ebro > Common Swallowtail Caterpillar - Papilio Machaon - Oruga de la mariposa Machaon - Oruga de la papallona rei o Machaon
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Common Swallowtail Caterpillar - Papilio Machaon - Oruga de la mariposa Machaon - Oruga de la papallona rei o Machaon
17-JUL-2007 © Cristian Jensen Marcet

Common Swallowtail Caterpillar - Papilio Machaon - Oruga de la mariposa Machaon - Oruga de la papallona rei o Machaon

Delta del Ebro - Delta de l'Ebre - Ebro Delta

Aquesta foto va ser presa en una de les sortides al Parc Natural del Delta de l'Ebre de Audouin Birding Tours

Veure més fotos d'un adult de Papallona rei (Papilio machaon)

La papallona rei o papallona tigre (Papilio machaon), és una papallona diürna de la família dels papilionidae.
La seva distribució geogràfica és molt ampla, incluïnt tota la zona temperada d'Europa, Àsia i Amèrica del nord. Té 37 subespècies.
Morfologia i costums
Papallona rei de costatÉs una de les papallones més espectaculars dels Països Catalans. La papallona rei té franjes de colors vius, groc i negre, que fan que sigui també coneguda com a "papallona tigre". Duu també unes taques nebuloses blaves als marges de les ales inferiors i dues taques rojes al costat de les "cues". Aquestes prolongacions de les ales son característiques de les papilionidae.
Aquesta papallona es de vol ràpid i es passa el dia anant de camp a camp i de flor en flor. L'hi agrada xuclar les flors de l'anís i del fonoll on de vegades hom la veu amb les ales esteses, reposant al sol. Viu en tres generacions de la primavera fins a la tardor. És una papallona molt comuna a l'estiu i hom la troba sovint als jardins.
Les erugues menjen preferentment les fulles de les plantes apiàcies o umbel·líferes, com la pastanaga borda, la pastanaga, l'anet, el fonoll, la xirivia i el comí de prat. Tenen un òrgan conegut com a "osmeterium" que pot emetre un líquid pudent per a espantar llurs enemics.
Les crisàlides de la papallona rei es troben fixades a una branca o a l'escorça d'un arbre o matoll per l'extrem de l'abdòmen.

Esta foto fue tomada en una de las excursiones al Parque Natural Delta del Ebro de Audouin Birding Tours
Ver mas fotos de un adulto de Mariposa rei o Macaon (Papilio machaon)

El macaón (Papilio machaon) es una especie de lepidóptero ditrisio de la familia Papilionidae ampliamente distribuida en el Hemisferio Norte. Se han descrito numerosas subespecies.
Es una de las mariposas más conocidas de Europa. Sin embargo, no se encuentra en Irlanda; en Inglaterra apenas está extendida y su existencia se limita a la región de Norfolk; en la Europa templada hay zonas en las que se puede localizar con facilidad; pero este insecto de tan bella apariencia tiende a desaparecer desde hace algunas decenas de años. Por el contrario, es común en la Península Ibérica; habita también en el norte de África, en la zona templada de Asia hacia el Himalaya, Japón y en distintas partes de América del Norte.
Su hábitat comprende entre el nivel del mar hasta los 2.000 msnm, en prados y zonas floreadas.
La macaón tiene entre 32 y 56 mm de envergadura y se caracteriza por las colas que posee en las alas posteriores. En climas septentrionales tiene una sola generación anual; en climas templados tiene dos generaciones, abril-mayo y julio-agosto, y hasta tres en lugares más cálidos como el sur de la península Ibérica y el norte de África.
La oruga del macaón es muy llamativa y, si se le irrita, puede hacer salir por su extremo anterior un órgano de defensa glandular de color naranja llamado osmaterium. La crisálida es generalmente de color verde o gris pardo.


This picture was taken in one of the day trip to Ebro Delta Nature Park from Audouin Birding Tours
See more photos from an adult Common Swallowtail (Papilio machaon)

The Old World Swallowtail, Papilio machaon, is a butterfly of the family Papilionidae. The butterfly is also known as the Common Yellow Swallowtail or simply the Swallowtail (a common name applied to all members of the family). It is the type species of the genus Papilio and occurs throughout the Palearctic region in Europe and Asia; it also occurs across North America, and thus, is not restricted to the Old World, despite the common name.
The trailing edges of the hind wings resemble the tails of swallows.The imago typically has yellow wings with black vein markings, and a wingspan of 65–86 millimetres (2.6–3.4 in). The hind wings of both sexes have a pair of protruding tails which give the butterfly its common name from the resemblance to the birds of the same name. Just below each tail is a red eye spot.
It can be distinguished from Papilio hospiton, which occurs sympatrically with P. machaon on Corsica and Sardinia by the longer "tails" on the hind wings. It can only be told apart from the Algerian species Papilio saharae by counting the segments on the antennae.
Distribution and status
This butterfly is present throughout the entire Palearctic region, ranging from Russia to China and Japan, (including the Himalayas and Taiwan), and across into Alaska, Canada, and the United States.
In Asia it is reported as far south as Saudi Arabia, Oman, the high mountains of Yemen, and Israel as well. In Southern Asia it occurs in Pakistan and Kashmir, Northern India, (Sikkim, to Assam and Arunachal Pradesh) Nepal, Bhutan, and northern Myanmar.
This butterfly is widespread in Europe. In the United Kingdom it is limited to a few areas in the Norfolk Broads of East Anglia. It is the UK's largest resident butterfly. The Monarch Danaus plexippus is slightly larger, but is only a rare vagrant.
As P. machaon is widespread throughout Eurasia and often common, it is not threatened as a species. It is listed as "Vulnerable" in the South Korean and Austrian Red Data Books, and also in the Red Data Book of the former Soviet Union.
In some countries, P. machaon or its subspecies are protected by law. Papilio machaon machaon is protected by law in six provinces of Austria, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, and Moldova. The species is protected in the United Kingdom, and subsp. verityi is protected in India.
The British subspecies P. m. brittanicus
Papilio machaon was named by Carl Linnaeus in the 10th edition of Systema Naturae in 1758, alongside nearly 200 other species of butterfly. Later, Pierre André Latreille designated it as the type species of the genus Papilio. The specific epithet machaon refers to Machaon, son of Asclepius in the works of Homer.
There are 37 subspecies.
Papilio machaon gorganus is strongly migratory in Europe and may be found in almost all habitats.
In the UK, P. m. brittanicus is an endemic subspecies, but occasionally individuals of the continental subspecies gorganus breed temporarily on the south coast. Subspecies brittanicus differs from the continental subspecies in being more heavily marked in black.
The Maltese Islands are home to another endemic subspecies, P. m. melitensis.
The butterfly has a strong and fast flight, but frequently pauses to hover over flowering herbs and sip nectar. It frequents the alpine meadows and hillsides and is fond of 'hilltopping' – congregating near summits to compete for passing females. At lower elevations it can also be seen visiting gardens.
Unlike other swallowtails, this species specialises in using plants of family Umbelliferae, females laying eggs singly. Milk Parsley Peucedanum palustre (also known as Marsh Hog's Fennel) is normally the only food plant used by the caterpillars of the British subspecies.The food plants of the Swallowtail in Europe, Asia, and North America are more varied than in the UK. It uses a wide variety of umbellifers including wild carrot Daucus carota, wild angelica Angelica sylvestris, fennel Foeniculum vulgare, and hogweeds Heracleum spp. In the Maltese Islands, the caterpillar feeds on plants such as rue Ruta chalepensis and fennel Foeniculum vulgare.
In Kashmir, the Common Yellow Swallowtail, as Papilio machaon is called there, inhabits alpine meadows in the Himalayas occurring from 2,000 feet (610 m) in Kashmir valley to 16,000 ft (4,900 m) in the Garhwal Himalayas. In India Himachal Pradesh, it is found over 4,000 ft (1,200 m) only and in Sikkim over 8,000 ft (2,400 m) only.
At lower elevations these butterflies fly from March to September. At higher elevations the butterflies are limited by the short summer seasons.
The British subspecies P. m. brittanicus is less mobile than its European continental counterpart and stays within, or close by, its fenland habitat.
Life cycle
Peucedanum palustre is the only food plant for the British subspecies.There usually are two to three broods in a year, but in northern areas the species may be univoltine. In some places such as the UK, some will pupate and emerge in the same year and others will overwinter as pupae before emerging the following year, a situation known as being partially bivoltine.
The caterpillar spends the first part of its life with the appearance of a bird dropping, an effective defense against predators. As the caterpillar grows larger it becomes green with black and orange markings. The caterpillar has a defense against predators in the form of an osmeterium which consists of retractable, fleshy projections behind its head that can release a foul smell if disturbed which deters insects but not birds.

Audouin Birding Tours birdwatching in Spain

Audouin Birding Tours - Birdwatching in Spain - Extremadura, Andalucia, Aragon and Catalonia -

Audouin Birding Tours

Audouin Birding Tours - Excursiones para la observacion de Aves en el Delta del Ebro, Ports y otras destinaciones en Catalunya y España -

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