Butterfly populations are a very good indicator of the health of an area's ecosystem !!
Also known as the Blue Swallowtail
The caterpillars from this species accumulate acids from the plants that they eat, so that they are poisonous to predators when eaten. Over generations the caterpillar’s ingestion of acidic plant matter accumulates, making the butterflies distasteful to most predators
Males of the species are metallic blue on their hindwings. Conversely, females have metallic black in their hindwings.
Several species have orange spots underneath their hindwings.
The orange spots of the Pipevine Swallowtail are arranged in a concise “J” pattern.
Six butterfly species practice “Batesan” mimicry relative to the Spicebush Swallowtail. (They appear similar to Pipevine Swallowtails, in order to avail themselves of the avoidance predators exercise towards them because of their potential poison to the predators.) These species are: Spicebush Swallowtail, Eastern Black Swallowtail, Tiger Swallowtail (only the dark females), Brushfoot Butterfly, Red Spotted Purple Butterfly and the Dana Fritillary (female).