Yesterday afternoon we were honored to have a Pale Swallowtail Papilio eurymedon spend a while resting on a blackberry leaf above the patio.
These butterflies are quite impressive in size, and are ever so graceful as they soar in the breeze.
This one could be a female because it is pale yellow. The males tend to be a white-cream color.
The orange and blue markings near the tail are very striking.
The host plants for these butterflies include coffeeberry and ceanothus.
I'd like to think that our Ray Hartman ceanothus shrub is a host for these butterflies, but I rarely see Pale Swallowtails here and have never noticed their larvae on the shrub.
There is only one brood per year, and they can be seen from March through August.
They usually prefer the stream beds and hilltops of chaparrals and canyons.