Papilio ophidicephalus (Emperor Swallowtail)
Photos for easy identification
The fore wings are dark-brown. In the middle of the wing there is a chain of large, yellow spots. At the outer edge there is a chain of little, yellow spots. At the front edge there are two little, yellow spots.
The underside of Papilio menestheus is very similar to the upside. But, next to the body there are additional, yellow lines.
The hind wings of Papilio menestheus are dark-brown and they have tails. The edge is wavy. In the middle of the wing there is a yellow band. At the outer edge there is a chain of yellow spots. Two big eye-spots dominate the wing.
The underside is very similar to the upside. But, next to the body there are additional, yellow lines.
The body (abdomen) is black. The thorax and the head are black. The underside of all parts is yellow.
Sex differences: None.
Papilio ophidicephalus is a butterfly from the Afrotropic (Africa) ecozone. You can observe this butterfly from Kenya until Mozambique.
- Clausena anisata
The first description of this butterfly was in 1878 by Oberthür. There are nine subspecies.
- Papilio ophidicephalus ayresi [van Son, 1939]
- Papilio ophidicephalus chirinda [van Son, 1939]
- Papilio ophidicephalus cottrelli [van Son, 1966]
- Papilio ophidicephalus entabeni [van Son, 1939]
- Papilio ophidicephalus mkuwadzi [Gifford, 1961]
- Papilio ophidicephalus niassicola [Storace, 1955]
- Papilio ophidicephalus phalusco [Suffert, 1904]
- Papilio ophidicephalus transvaalensis [van Son, 1939]
- Papilio ophidicephalus zuluensis [van Son, 1939]
Protection provisions / Red List
- CITES: (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora):
- EU regulation on trading with species of wild Fauna and Flora:
- IUCN Red List of threatened species:
Similar and closely-related species
Papilio ophidicephalus Oberthür 1878
Classification / Taxonomy / Family tree
- Kingdom: ANIMALIA
- Phylum: ARTHROPODA
- Class: INSECTA
- Order: LEPIDOPTERA
- Suborder: DITRYSIA
- Superfamily: PAPILIONOIDEA
- Family: PAPILIONIDAE
- Subfamily: PAPILIONINAE
- Tribe: PAPILIONINI
- Genus: PAPILIO
- Specific name: OPHIDICEPHALUS