Spectacular Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly

Tiger swallowtail butterflies photographed by Jeff Zablow at Raccoon Creek State Park, PA
The common name is Tiger Swallowtail butterfly. I’ve added the word ‘Spectacular’ because that was the thought that shot through my mind when I made my approach. Bedazzling colors. Fresh, strong, vibrant. We were on the trail minutes after 8 A.M. He and others flew out of their nighttime tree roosts, and each found a flat surface to begin that slow, steady warm-up. I love those few minutes. They enable me to make careful approach. Approach that 15 minutes later would be impossible to do.

His ventral wing design reminded me of the primary reason that I have for photographing butterflies. I’ve lived in New York City. I’ve frequented Christie’s, Sotheby’s, and Doyle Galleries alot. The workmanship displayed here . . . exceeds the finest work of the finest jewelry houses. The origin of this beauty, ah that is quite a question.

Papilio Glaucus enjoyed early on a June 2014 morning. What will he do over the next 9 to 10 hours? Fly madly, almost non-stop, searching for a mate.


8 thoughts on “Spectacular Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly

  1. Pingback: Purple emperor butterflies in England | Dear Kitty. Some blog

    • Kim,
      Yes, You’ve got that right. Most butterflies are like most people, what you’d expect, much like most others. When I see a butterfly like this one, whose colors and patterns are exquisite, i must pause and recognize the producer.


  2. Wow! What a very beautiful photograph, Jeff, and indeed, an awesome “winged beauty!”

    I was loading my photos from this morning of a yellow Tiger Swallowtail that visited my container of yellow Lantana today, just before I saw your post in my email. Almost every photo had made me say “wow” out loud to myself. I was mesmerized, literally, at the beauty and I was thinking how nature is the best artist ever!

    Reading your words was like reading my mind ;)

    Your photo is particularly vibrant in colors! Thanks for sharing your butterfly days.

    With Gratitude,


    • Michelle,
      You are very kind. Shooting film has its trials and challenges, but it does reward with real-time color. Richly colored wildlife signals that we are doing an OK job of conserving our land, air and water.
      I enjoyed your Comment here, and your sentiments.
      Jeff. . . just back from the ‘hot’ Middle East


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