Parnassius clodius images

butterflymomok(7a NE OK)July 25, 2012

For all of you who remember Ladobe, these are the result of his encouragement to visit the area around Beartooth Plateau. Although I didn't make it back to Beartooth this year, I explored the area west of the Tetons. Before going, I told Larry where I was going to be, and he shared memories of this area from his youth. For all of you wondering about his health, he still deals with cancer and the disabilities from the treatments; however, he is in good spirits.

It was Ladobe's photos of the Parnassians that led me to search for this butterfly. There are actually three species and numerous subspecies in the continental US; and there are other species around the world. Larry specialized in Parnassians and shared photos from his collection.

Here are photos of the Parnassius clodius (don't know subspecies) found in two locations on the western Tetons. Colonies were found at Targhee Ski Resort and Teton Canyon trails, east of Driggs, Idaho. Photos were taken July 6th through 12th. Elevations were 7000 feet and above.

The first two photos are males, and the last is a female. She has a sphragis on her abdomen which is a wax plug that is made by the male butterfly to block mating with another male.

Parnassians belong to the Papilionidae or Swallowtail family.


Here is a link that might be useful: Butterflies around YNP area

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Lovely! Thanks for sharing.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 3:05PM
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misssherry(Z8/9SE MS)

Wow! How fantastic, Sandy! Such interesting butterflies!

I remember Ladobe saying that the males made a chastity belt for the females, and he wasn't kidding!


    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 8:27PM
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Thanks for the update on Ladobe.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 11:13PM
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Yes, I appreciate the update on Larry as well. I do remember is focus on the Parnassians. Do you know if they are the only butterflies that "intercept" subsequent matings in this manner, Sandy? Really fascinating!


    Bookmark   July 26, 2012 at 7:18AM
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butterflymomok(7a NE OK)


They aren't the only BFs that do this. However, I couldn't find out how many or what kinds use sphragides. There isn't much out there. This butterfly is also referred to as the Apollo.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2012 at 10:40AM
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butterflymomok(7a NE OK)

Parnassius phoebus is the Small Apollo, this one is known as Clodian Apollo.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2012 at 10:49AM
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Thanks for the info, Sandy. Activity is picking up a little here. I even have about 4 RAs that have made it thru to 5th instar w/o parasitation. Tons of GFs, making up for last year. No Swallowtails, tho. They are MIA here, after infrequent visits earlier and very few eggs. Lots of predators this year. Robber flies, Ichneumon wasps, wasps in general. I saw a Cardinal grab at one of the Manducas on my Datura this week. He didn't get the cat, but did kill it.

Saw a huge American Lady and very small Buckeye this week. Of course, the Cabbage Whites are here all the time. Very few QMs and HEs, TEs right now. I keep putting out the bananas. It's like one day the garden will be filled with hummers, birds, butterflies, and the next 4 or 5 days, nothing. Very odd. I am once again wondering about the migration this year with drought nearly everywhere. I am keeping my stand of Sunflowers and other nectar plants going in case they find me again.

Also had lots of Skippers and Checkerspots. I had cats on my Sunflowers that I "think" were Gorgones again.

One observation this year is that there are a lot of Skippers nectaring on the Lavender Porterweed. The flowers are more open than on the red, I guess. So, it is very popular with the little ones, big ones, and hummers.


    Bookmark   July 28, 2012 at 7:07AM
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butterflymomok(7a NE OK)

Correction to anyone reading this thread. Ladobe is no longer dealing with cancer--all tests good. Small Apollo--forget that! LOL

Larry said to tell everyone "Hello". He stops by from time to time to check out the posts.

About the sphragis--"In the leps a sphragis is normally associated with primitive species, and Parnassinae are so primitive they are almost moths. Anyway, I thought about it on my walk, and off the top of my head In Papilionidae all of the Parnassiinae and I think most of the Troidini, and in some of the Nymphalids from tribes Melitaeini, Acraeini , Satyrini , and some of the Heliconiinae. Probably more, but that�s all that came to mind . . ." Ladobe.

The amount of knowledge Ladobe has is mind-boggling, and continues to make me aware of my ignorance about Lepidoptera.


    Bookmark   July 28, 2012 at 8:48AM
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So glad to hear the update on Ladobe. My goodness he's had cancer for a long time so it's unexpected to get good news. Great news!

    Bookmark   July 28, 2012 at 10:06AM
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