Steven Cheshire's British Butterflies
British Butterflies: Species: Species Account - The Swallowtail European Race:
Swallowtail European Race
Papilio gorganus (Linnaeus, 1758)

Swallowtail European Race egg.
ova
  Swallowtail European Race caterpillar.
larva
  Swallowtail European Race chrysalis
pupa
Swallowtail European Race
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Nomenclature
Insecta: Lepidoptera : Family Papilionidae: Subfamily Papilioninae : Genus Papilio: Species gorganus:
Description
Similar to the British Race of Swallowtail (Papilio machaon britannicus) the European Race (Papilio machaon gorganus) is widespread on mainland Europe but is a rare migrant to the UK.

The European species is identical to the British species except it has a more pale lemon yellow ground colour compared to the British race.
Habitat
Distribution
Although the European species of the Swallowtail is at present a rare migrant to the south of the UK it is thought that global warming and its more varied habitat and larval foodplant preferences may allow it to colonise the UK and breed here in the future. It is however widespread in Europe (although declining in some countries) and can be found across into Asia and Japan. It is also present in North America.
Where to see the Swallowtail European Race in the British Isles
Although the European species of the Swallowtail is at present a rare migrant to the south of the UK it is thought that global warming and its more varied habitat and larval foodplant preferences may allow it to colonise the UK and breed here in the future. It is however widespread in Europe (although declining in some countries) and can be found across into Asia and Japan. It is also present in North America.
Other notes
You are unlikly to see the European species in the UK

20-09-07 - Swallowtail seen in Knightshayes Court Tiverton.(Grid ref: SS963154) by Ken Furmedge.

08-08-06 - Swallowtail seen in Morebath Devon. (Grid ref: S9532520) by Mike Medill.

06-08-06 - Two Swallowtails seen in East Knowstone near South Molton Devon. (Grid ref: S9532520) by Anita Allen.
Lifecycle chart
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Flight chart
JanuaryFebruaryMarchAprilMayJuneJulyAugustSeptemberOctoberNovemberDecember
The lifecycle and flight charts should be regarded as approximate guides to the Swallowtail European Race in Britain. Specific lifecycle states, adult emergence and peak flight times vary from year to year due to variations in weather conditions.
IUCN category status 2010 5   IUCN category status 2007 34
--awaiting data-- --awaiting data--

5Fox, R., Warren, M., Brereton, T. M., Roy, D. B. & Robinson, A.
(2010) A new Red List of British Butterflies. Insect Conservation and Diversity.
Not Applicable Not Applicable

3Fox, R., Warren, M & Brereton, T.
(2007) New Red List of British Butterflies. Butterfly Conservation, Wareham.

4More information about IUCN categories.
Wingspan
-mm
UK status
Rare Migrant
Larval foodplants
Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare), Wild Carrot (Daucus carota) and Wild Angelica (Angelica sylvestris).
British subspecies
Papilio machaon ssp. gorganus (Fruhstorfer, 1922)
European race which occasionally occurs on our south coast as a rare migrant from mainland Europe.
Butterflies of Britain ID Chart
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Butterflies of Britain (Laminated ID Chart).
Online store
Visit our online store for many more butterfly related books and gifts.
Population trends 1
UK Population trend 1995-2004 not applicable
UK Population trend 1976-2004 not applicable

1Fox, R., Asher. J., Brereton. T., Roy, D & Warren, M. (2006) The State of Butterflies in Britain & Ireland, Pices, Oxford.
UK BAP status 2
UK BAP status not applicable (link)

2For information about the UK Biodiversity Action Plan, visit the JNCC web site jncc.defra.gov.uk.

National Biodiversity Network Gateway
National Biodiversity Network Gateway Distribution Map



Areas in and indicate a contraction in distribution of the Swallowtail European Race except in Ireland where data is only available up until 1999.

* Records shown in outside the natural distribution may be the result of illegal or accidental releases by breeders or, depending upon the species, migrant individuals from mainland Europe.

Key to map*
= 2000 to 2010 inclusive (current distribution)
= records from 1950 to 1999 inclusive
= records from 1900 to 1949 inclusive
Records prior to 1st January 1900 are not shown.

The NBN Gateway records are shown on the map right. (See terms and conditions).

More data is available on the Swallowtail European Race on the NBN Gateway web site.
Powered by NBN Gateway.
References
For full details of books and reports mentioned on this web site, view the references page.

Find out more online*
Swallowtail European Race can be found on Peter Eeles excellent UK Butterflies web site.
Swallowtail European Race can be found on Matt Rowlings excellent European Butterflies web site.

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Photographs of the Swallowtail European Race
Image ID BB1372 - Swallowtail European Race - © Steven Cheshire
Swallowtail European Race (imago)
BB1372 ©
Image ID BB1371 - Swallowtail European Race - © Steven Cheshire
Swallowtail European Race (imago)
BB1371 ©
Image ID BB1370 - Swallowtail European Race - © Steven Cheshire
Swallowtail European Race (imago)
BB1370 ©
Image ID BB1368 - Swallowtail European Race - © Steven Cheshire
Swallowtail European Race (imago)
BB1368 ©
Image ID BB1367 - Swallowtail European Race - © Steven Cheshire
Swallowtail European Race (imago)
BB1367 ©
Image ID BB1366 - Swallowtail European Race - © Steven Cheshire
Swallowtail European Race (imago)
BB1366 ©
Image ID BB724 - Swallowtail European Race - © Steven Cheshire
Swallowtail European Race male (imago)
BB724 ©
Image ID BB723 - Swallowtail European Race - © Steven Cheshire
Swallowtail European Race female (imago)
BB723 ©
There are 8 photographs of the Swallowtail European Race in our stock photo library.