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Photo Information
Copyright: Marius Secan (marius-secan) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2007 W: 0 N: 5412] (29598)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2013-05-05
Categories: Insects
Camera: Nikon D300, NIKON AF-S 105 mm f/2,8 G IF-ED VR II
Exposure: f/13.0, 1/320 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2013-10-16 7:49
Viewed: 1768
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 46
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note

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.

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, Lebanon, and Israel. 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 in the Red Data Book of the former Soviet Union.

In some countries, P. machaon and 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 butterfly has a strong and fast flight, but frequently pauses to hover over flowering herbs and sip nectar. It frequents alpine meadows and hillsides, and males are fond of 'hilltopping', congregating near summits to compete for passing females. At lower elevations, it can 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.

ramthakur, kinglove, maaciejka, PaulLees, aruntp, flashpoint, anel has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

Classic capture of this Swallowtail, Marius.
The image is technically flawless.
Thanks for taking out this jewel of a picture from your archives and sharing it with us.

照的清晰 很漂亮的特寫蝴蝶
草也很漂亮 這是經典作品

Hi, awesome capture. Nice color n sharpness

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2013-10-16 8:17]

Wow, Marius, this is perfection.
Without a doubt the best photo of this species I've ever seen. Not only technically, but also in beauty and composition. High quality!

  • Great 
  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2013-10-16 9:33]

Hello Marius.
A beautiful butterfly and a beautiful composition. The pose on the lovely grass flowers is wonderful. Beautiful rich colors, sharp details, and a lovely background.Regards Siggi

Hi Marius,
what a nice presentation of this butterfly. Perfect sharpness. Perfect details. Amazing colours. Just excellent!
Thanks for sharing,

Ciao Marius. Great POV here! Razor details super sharp! Beautiful natural colours.


Ciao Marius, great macro of fantastic butterfly on beautiful blurry BG, fine details, superb sharpnness, wonderful natural colors and splendid light, very well done, my friend, ciao Silvio

  • Great 
  • iti Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 577 W: 0 N: 650] (7939)
  • [2013-10-16 11:11]

Hi Roberto,
Wow,that is a fantastic close-up,excellent detail and focus,very good composition and gorgeous light and colours with beautiful
Regards Jiri.

WAUWH!!! Marius
SUPER shot so many sharpness ans great details
the bg and colours are beautiful
thanks greeting lou

  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2013-10-16 11:39]

Hi Marius,great memory of the start of springtime whit this new born machaon,the quality of the pic is another time the best as possible,great details,colors and bright exposure too.Have a nice evening and thanks,Luciano

Superb sharpness with amazing detail my good friend, lovely lighting with good natural colour tones, great effort here Marius and very well done,

Best Regards,


Hello Marius,
The butterfly images that we see on TN these days are out of this world and this is no exception. It is just fabulous! Well done.

Hello Marius,
Wow, what a stunning macro of this beautiful Swallowtail! This is just one piece of work of perfection, especially DOF, composition, details and colors. A great masterpiece! Thanks for sharing and warm regards!

  • Great 
  • Ishi Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 298 W: 21 N: 1943] (13387)
  • [2013-10-16 23:26]

Welcome back!

Perfect capture of Papilio machaon. Here it feeds mostly on Ruta chalepensis.

All the best,


excellent image of swallowtail. good lighting and wonderful closeup showing every details on the wings. good work. tfs.

wow, what a perfect capture, greetings Ori

Hello Marius
Superb! Wonderful setting, excellent light, perfect detail. Very good depth of field giving an excellent 3-D image.
regards yiannis

  • Great 
  • nagraj Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1618 W: 106 N: 3208] (15166)
  • [2013-10-17 5:57]

Beautiful species and lovely capture..the colors and details are superb...perfect composition. tfs.

Another impressive photo Marius! The composition, the BG, the colours and the sharpness for one more time are excellent!

majestic posture of this splendid machaon
great management of light,Marius
ciao sERGIO

  • Great 
  • anel Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 3053 W: 3 N: 8715] (40574)
  • [2013-10-19 4:41]

Hello Marius,
Sorry to be a little late. Was away for two days. Perfect shot of this beautiful species, sharpness, composition, background all is of highest quality.
Thanks a lot

  • Great 
  • Tina Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 60 W: 0 N: 132] (1427)
  • [2013-10-22 5:19]

Buna Marius ! Superba fotografie ! Pe deasupra te invidiez nespus pentru ca ai avut sansa sa fotografiezi fluturele asta si pe deasupra intro maniera perfecta ! O bijuterie ! O zi minunata, Tina

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