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Photo Information
Copyright: Lawhill Russo (lawhill) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 317 W: 2 N: 565] (2054)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2007-06-09
Categories: Insects
Camera: Nikon D-200, Sigma 150mm F2.8 APO Macro DG HSM
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2007-06-23 8:09
Viewed: 2838
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 37
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Black Swallowtail
Family: Parnassians and Swallowtails (Papilionidae)

Subfamily: Swallowtails (Papilioninae)

Identification: Upper surface of wings mostly black; on inner edge of hindwing is a black spot centered in larger orange spot. Male has yellow band near edge of wings; female has row of yellow spots. Female hindwing with iridescent blue band. In the Southwest, yellow forms predominate in the subspecies P. coloro.

Life history: Males perch and patrol for receptive females. Female lays eggs singly on leaves and flowers of the host, which are then eaten by hatching larvae. Hibernates as a chrysalis.

Flight: One-2 flights from April-October in northern regions of range; 3 flights in southern regions.

Wing span: 3 1/4 - 4 1/4 inches (8 - 11 cm).

Caterpillar hosts: Leaves of plants in the parsley family (Apiaceae) including Queen Anne's Lace, carrot, celery and dill. Sometimes plants in the citrus family (Rutaceae) are preferred.

Adult food: Nectar from flowers including red clover, milkweed, and thistles.

Habitat: A variety of open areas including fields, suburbs, marshes, deserts, and roadsides.

Range: Most of the eastern U.S., north into Quebec, west into s. Saskatchewan, Colorado and se. California; south to n. South America. Subspecies coloro in desert Southwest.

angybone, haraprasan, Kathleen, nglen, jonathan_hart, Matt-Bird, eqshannon, fartash, dew77, jaycee, Ken52, jmirah, scottevers7 has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

Great color! So vivid. Wonderful positioning of the subject. This is a straight-forward gorgeous photo! :)

Hi Lawhill.
Wonderful shot of him coming in, composition is great. Beautiful colours and good detail. The focus has slightly gone past his head to his back wing but the image still shows good detail. Great DOF making him and the flower stand out against the background.

New Zealand

  • Great 
  • nglen Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2883 W: 30 N: 9683] (36145)
  • [2007-06-23 8:32]

Hi Lawhill. you have captured a very good shot of the Swallowtail.the colours are amazing. the detail shows it of to its best. sharp focus. and a nice POV. a finished off in a nice frame. very well done TFS. great notes to read as well.

wonderful composition, beautiful strong colours and good focus, good job !!!

Hi Lawhill,
Beatiful shot, the image and colours seem to pop out at you.
Good shot,

Beautiful colors. I have found that my Sigma is better than my Nikon lens. Sigma brings out the colors so well as you have shown.

Clarity is something I am having troubles with though on Sigma. Your picture is close to focus as most of mine are with Sigma but I think it is a quality balance with the lens clarity vs color...or maybe not...but wonderful addition.



This is a very nice shot. I love the pop of the colors and the simplicity of the shot. Great job!



hi lawhill,
beautiful capture, well composed shot with nicely saturated colours, sharp image with perfect focus,
tfs & regards

Hello Lawhill
Fantastic shot of this Black Swallowtail,
Perfect focusing ,DOF and BG,
Very nice colors and compo,Superb shot,friend


  • Great 
  • dew77 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4432 W: 248 N: 4028] (13270)
  • [2007-06-23 11:02]

Hello Lawhill,
Excellent close up of this beautiful butterfly.POV,3D effect,blurred BG,contrast between butterfly,flower and BG are wonderful.Excellent work!

  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2007-06-23 11:30]

Hi Lawhill,

Wonderful shot with such vivid colors. The flower and the butterfly are both beautiful. Excellent details showing off the lovely pattern.


hello Lawhill,
This is beautiful enough to have onn the wall! Great shot! The pov, detail, colours and framing are all A1.
Kind regards,
Bev :-)

  • Good 
  • Ken52 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 636 W: 93 N: 1243] (4195)
  • [2007-06-23 20:28]

Hi Lawhill,
The composition is excellent. The frame is very nice. Unfortunately, the harsh reflective light from the flower has thrown off the colors of the Black Swallowtail and given him orange where there should be yellow.

  • Great 
  • arfer Gold Star Critiquer [C: 2731 W: 0 N: 0] (0)
  • [2007-06-23 22:26]

Hello Lawhill

A beautiful image with outstanding colours.The composition is very nice,and the butterfly is well focused with sharp details.You have captured an interesting pose.Very good POV.Nicely done.TFS


  • Great 
  • jmirah Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 509 W: 5 N: 1141] (4687)
  • [2007-06-23 23:02]

Beautiful photo...Outstanding color and POV...Tfs

  • Great 
  • Mana Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1772 W: 36 N: 5597] (18598)
  • [2007-06-24 3:27]

Hi Lawhill,
Outstanding shot of this beautiful swallowtail. Such vivid colours and sharp details with fine focus creates a pure artistic presentation here. Great POV to portray it and a precise DOF. The green BG works wonders here to highlight the flower and the butterfly. Very nicely composed. Kudos.

Hi Lawhill,
Wow! Excellent capture both the subject and the flower it is on. I our place we call that flower "Chandramukhi" it only blooms in rainy season. Thanks a lot for sharing. Sorry no smilies left shall post it tomorrow.

Hi Lawhill,
That is a beautiful shot. Excellent composition. The colors and detail are superb. Really a great shot.

Lovely photo with perfect lighting, focus of subjects and POV. Good choice of lens.

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