Blue Mountain Swallowtail - missdannocksyear11biologyclass

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Blue Mountain
Swallowtail Butterfly
Cody Thomas
Papilio Ulysses
Papilio Ulysses is the Binomial name of the more
commonly known Blue Mountain Swallowtail, or
Blue Mountain Butterfly. It is a large
swallowtail butterfly that is famous for it’s iridescent blue
colours, it is considerably favored by butterfly collectors
and tourists alike. It is distributed throughout
Australasia and is an emblem for tourism in
Australia’s northern state, Queensland.
Science Behind Their Difference
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Papilionidae
Genus: Papilio
Species: P. Ulysses
Discovered and observed by Carl Linnaeus in 1758.
Life Cycle
Like all Butterflies they are born as caterpillars, and evolve
into a Butterfly. The Papilio Ulysses is a small green
caterpillar with small blue markings spread over the body
and two small white horns on the tail, It feeds off the plants
while it is able to camouflage because of its green exterior
hiding away from predators. It is born only within tropical
rainforests not having any need to go else where, this becomes
a problem when the size of its habitat begins to diminish.
Caterpillar and Pupa State
It will feed of the foliage of jungle trees such as the
Fuzzy Lemon Aspen, the Silver Ash , Kerosine
Wood or any other type of Rutaceae (A family of
plants). The caterpillar needs to continue to feed
until it enters a Pupa state (or cocoon) which is held
up by a food plant, this state only lasts a few days
and the Pupa is only very small and fragile
measuring around 4cm average.
Birth of something Beautiful
The Papilio Ulysses finally emerges the Pupa with beautiful
electric blue coloured wings that are bordered in black, the
hindwings have a long tail with lobes on the end. The
underlying layer of their wings are a dullish grey- brown
that is necessary for it’s own protection from predators. The
wings spread across 10cm females usually being larger, they
feed on tropical plants such as Citrus plants, Euodia and
Pink flowered Doughwood.
Butterflies in general are ectothermic creatures that are
practically weightless and that flitter around their respective
habitats, they rely on external sources for warmth and they
have adaptations that allow them to assist in warming or
cooling their tiny bodies. Butterflies are able to darken their
wings, veins and wing scales to allow heat absorption to
warm their bodies and do the opposite to cool them down.
Their wings are also hydrophobic repelling water which keeps
the butterfly clean because the repelled water collects dirt and
dust particles that are collected on the wings.
How it lives its short life
The Mountain Blue is a butterfly that is always flattering
around for its entire life which spans from a couple of days
to a maximum of 8 months. For it to survive can be thought
to be hard considering every time it flies a bright electric blue
flash is constantly going on and off, some so bright it can be
seen from about 100 metres away. Predators see this as a
easy food but the Mountain Blue evades this by flying above
the forest canopy and only stopping to eat for a few seconds
at a time, and when it does stop it hides it’s blue wings and
appears brown to camouflage and hide from predators.
Giving birth to beauty
The Ulysses Butterfly (Mountain Blue) lays its eggs on the
leaves of the Euodia Tree because the caterpillars feed easily
on its foliage and are able to camouflage as soon as birth so
they aren’t under threat when birth like sea turtles are. The
Euodia Tree is a tree that is very important for butterflies,
they have pink flowers sprouting out of its branches and
provides a breeding ground and food for the butterflies.
Male butterflies are attracted to bright blue colours through
the assumption that they are females of the same species,
proving that the coloured wings are a huge influence on
courtship.
The social network
The Papilio Ulysses are creatures that attract each other by
their colourful wings, this is assumed to pose competition
among males and females.
Copulating Adults. The
larger one above is the
female.
Bibliography
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P. Vukusic, J. R. Sambles, C. R. Lawrence, R. J. Wootton (2001) Sculpted-multilayer
optical effects in two species of Papilio butterfly.
Papilio ulysses. 2012. Papilio ulysses. [ONLINE] Available at:
http://lepidoptera.butterflyhouse.com.au/papi/ulysses.html.[Accessed 05
September 2012].
Ulysses Butterfly Habitat | eHow.com. 2012. Ulysses Butterfly Habitat |
eHow.com. [ONLINE] Available at:
http://www.ehow.com/facts_6012045_ulysses-butterfly-habitat.html. [Accessed
05 September 2012].
Ulysses Swallowtail (Papilio ulysses) . 2012. Ulysses Swallowtail (Papilio ulysses) .
[ONLINE] Available at:
http://www.ozanimals.com/Insect/Ulysses-Swallowtail/Papilio/ulysses.html.
[Accessed 05 September 2012].
ButterflyCorner.net: Papilio ulysses (Mountain Blue). 2012. ButterflyCorner.net:
Papilio ulysses (Mountain Blue). [ONLINE] Available at:
http://en.butterflycorner.net/Papilio-ulysses-MountainBlue.schwalbenschwanz100.0.html. [Accessed 05 September 2012].
Butterfly Wings, Eyes, Antennae, Legs, and Proboscis Pictures : Gardens With
Wings . 2012. Butterfly Wings, Eyes, Antennae, Legs, and Proboscis Pictures :
Gardens With Wings . [ONLINE] Available at:
http://www.gardenswithwings.com/facts-info.html/a0812ButterflyBody.
[Accessed 05 September 2012].
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