Pale Swallowtail   Papilio eurymedon

Life history facts


egg:  females lay singly on host plant leaves

larva: feeds on leaves and rest on silken mats in shelters of curled leaves

pupa:  hibernate

adult:  males patrol hillsides, canyons, mtn. summits in search of females; flight fast and erratic, in complex patterns thru bushes

Status:  fairly common resident

Flights:  1, Mar-Sep

Distribution/known sites in Monterey County:  widespread, coastal streams (e.g., Big Creek) to inland peaks - Fremont, Chalone, Chew’s Ridge

Habitats:  oak woodland, chaparral, conifers, canyons

Host plants:  buckthorn, coffeeberry, alder, ceanothus

Nectar plants:  mints, thistles, buckeyes, yerba santa, wallflower

Conservation:  none required


  1.   flies with western tiger, but less riparian, prefers hilltops

  2.   congregates on moist sandbars/damp ground, heads facing same way

  3.   sexes similar, but fem. yellower, can be confused w/ W. tiger swallowtail; tail has half-twist, more pointed FW than tiger swallowtail

arroyo seco Indians rd. 4/10/07