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Citrus Swallowtail Butterfly

Citrus swallowtail butterfly Citrus Swallowtail Butterfly (Papilio demodocus) hovering over plumbago flowers, Curry's Post, KZN, South Africa. © Scotch Macaskill

Camera Gear: Canon EOS 50D; Lens: Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM; Focal length: 400mm; Aperture: f/5.6; Shutter speed: 1/2500; ISO: 400

The Citrus Swallowtail, also known as the Orange Dog or Christmas butterfly, is a member of the Papilionidae family. It is a large and spectacular black butterly with speckles or patches of pale yellow. The hind wings each have two black, blue and orange eyespots.

This butterfly is sometimes regarded as a pest in citrus orchards where the larvae feed on the citrus tree leaves, hence the name "Citrus Dog". At the same time, its wide distribution is attributed to its ability to breed on a variety of plants that are often unrelated to each other.

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