Rare Butterflies Spotted At Biscayne National Park

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Good news out of Biscayne National Park, where biologists have spotted almost three dozen Schaus Swallowtail Butterfly adults, as well as nine individuals of the Bahama Swallowtail.

That news is particularly good because these species were becoming harder and harder to spot in recent years. According to park officials, the sightings of the Bahama swallowtail represent the first recent evidence of this species on Elliott Key in the park.

The Bahama swallowtail was once reported from Elliott Key, but it has not been observed there for quite some time, and was never considered a permanent resident or breeder on Elliott, the park said.

The University of Florida researchers documented female butterflies depositing eggs on plants and also saw numerous larvae; both of these observations confirm that this species is now breeding on Elliott Key, the park notes.

Regular Traveler readers might recall that we reported back in June on efforts to raise Schaus Swallowtail butterflies in captivity.

The images above demonstrate the differences between the Bahama swallowtail (pictured on top) and the Schaus swallowtail (pictured on bottom).