Papilio constantinus

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Constantine's swallowtail
Papilio constantinus.jpg
Papilioconstantinus Ward, 1871.JPG
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Papilionidae
Genus: Papilio
Species: P. constantinus
Binomial name
Papilio constantinus
Ward, 1871[1][2]
  • Princeps constantinus
  • Papilio constantinus f. chrysothemis Stoneham, 1931
  • Papilio constantinus alticola Le Cerf, 1924
  • Papilio constantinus monticolus Le Cerf, 1924
  • Papilio constantinus f. mathieui Dufrane, 1946
  • Papilio constantinus mweruana f. wittei Berger, 1981

Papilio constantinus, the Constantine's swallowtail, is a butterfly of the family Papilionidae. It is found in Sub-Saharan Africa.

The wingspan is 70–90 mm in males and 80–95 mm in females.The ground colour is black with pale yellow or white markings including a large yellow spot in the cell. Its flight period is during the warmer months peaking from November to February.[3]

The larvae feed on Vepris reflexa, Vepris lanceolata, Vepris undulata, Clausena species, Citrus species, Teclea trifoliatum, Teclea nobilis, and Teclea gerrardii.[1][3]


Papilio constantinus is a member of the dardanus species group. The members of the clade are:


Papilio constantinus on flower.jpg

Listed alphabetically:[1]

  • P. c. constantinus Ward, 1871 (south-eastern Ethiopia, southern Somalia, coast of Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, southern and north-eastern Zambia, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, eastern Botswana, South Africa, Swaziland)
  • P. c. lecerfi Koçak, 1996 (Kenya: central highlands and the Mau Escarpment)
  • P. c. mweruanus Joicey & Talbot, 1927 (Democratic Republic of the Congo, western Tanzania, Zambia)


Afrotropic ecozone.


  1. ^ a b c Papilio,
  2. ^ Afrotropical Butterflies: File C – Papilionidae - Tribe Papilionini
  3. ^ a b Woodhall, Steve (2005). Field Guide to Butterflies of South Africa. Cape Town, South Africa: Struik. ISBN 978-1-86872-724-7. 
  • Carcasson, R.H. 1960 "The Swallowtail Butterflies of East Africa (Lepidoptera, Papilionidae)". Journal of the East Africa Natural History Society pdf Key to East Africa members of the species group, diagnostic and other notes and figures. (Permission to host granted by The East Africa Natural History Society)
  • Collins, N. Mark; Morris, Michael G. (1985). Threatened Swallowtail Butterflies of the World: The IUCN Red Data Book. Gland & Cambridge: IUCN. ISBN 978-2-88032-603-6 – via Biodiversity Heritage Library. 

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