Black swallowtail butterfly egg

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I started raising native Kentucky butterflies four years ago.  It has been a relatively easy and enjoyable learning experience.  Black swallowtails (Papilio polyxenes), also known as parsley butterflies, are one of my favorites and one of the easiest to raise.

Black swallowtail butterfly egg on dill plant

Last week I saw a black swallowtail butterfly fluttering around my small patch of dill, parsley and fennel plants.  I grow these plants partly to eat, and also to attract the butterflies.  I have found eggs on these plants in the past.  Sure enough, when I looked later I found this tiny light-colored egg on a small dill plant.

Black swallowtail butterfly adult

I have brought the plant and egg inside.  I hope to photograph the black swallowtail’s life cycle.  I look forward to watching it change into a caterpillar, then a chrysalis, and finally an adult butterfly like the female above.  I am checking the egg daily and will report the happenings.

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