Plant-Insect Interaction: Black swallowtail butterfly on bull thistle

Black swallowtail butterfly (Papilio polyxenes, Papilionidae) on bull thistle (Cirsium vulgare, Asteraceae). Photographed 08/26/2010 near Clayton Michigan.

Bull thistle (Cirsium vulgare, Asteraceae) is native to Eurasia but it’s present in North America as an invasive species.  It’s also classified as a noxious weed in many states.  Despite this unfavorable status, it has one benefit in that it supplies nectar to insects like this black swallowtail butterfly (Papilio polyxenes, Papilionidae).  This one is a female;  males have a more distinct yellow band on the back of the wings.

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About Jeremy Sell

Science and nature nerd.
This entry was posted in Botany, Ecology, Entomology, Organism Interactions and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Plant-Insect Interaction: Black swallowtail butterfly on bull thistle

  1. Pingback: Random Insect: Spicebush swallowtail butterfly | The Life of Your Time

  2. wendyfe says:

    Thank you for his post and the lovely image of th Swallowtail on the thistle. May I use this photo on my blog? I am growing dye and pollinator plants and have seen the Black Swallowtail in my garden!

    Like

  3. Jeremy Sell says:

    Thanks for visiting, Wendy. You can use the photo if it has a link back or credit

    Like

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