Family - Papilionidae

Genus - Iphiclides

Species - I. feisthameli (Duponchel) ( = Iphiclides podalirius feisthameli)

Spanish name - Chupaleche

The Spanish swallowtail is a large butterfly distributed over the Iberian peninsula with incursions south into Morocco and north into southern France.

It can be distinguished from the superficially similar Swallowtail butterfly by; its more square, wedged-shape appearance; wider black stripes; longer tails and blue "eyes" in the hind wing spots. It flies differently too with a seemingly vague, directionless style of flight like a piece of thin paper being carried by the wind. Some dispute exists on the taxonomy of the Spanish species (see above) separating it from the nominal Scarce swallowtail Iphiclides podalirius, the slight difference in colouration not being considered enough by some authorities.


The larvae feed on fruit trees, mainly Prunus and Malus species and the adult feeds on milky sap producing plants, hence its Spanish name which can be translated as milk sucker.


Iphiclides feisthameli is a bivoltine species, these images being of a first brood, taken in May.