(previously known as Papilio aristeus)
(Specimen: courtesy of the The Australian Museum)
This species was possibly named after one of the Gods of Ancient Greece. Aristeus was a beekeeper, and one of the sons of the sun god Apollo. Alternatively, perhaps it was named after the Ancient Greek Olympic Champion Aristeus of Argos.
The eggs of this species are white, later turning pink. They are laid in clusters on a foodplant. The Caterpillars are black with brown lines along the body and lines of silver spots across the body. There are dark blue tentacles on the thorax and tail. The Caterpillars feed on plants in the Soursop family (ANNONACEAE) such as:
The Caterpillars feed communally initially but separate to feed alone as they mature.
They leave the plant to pupate in the ground debris.
The upperside of the wings of the adult butterflies is green with black markings. including 5 black bars along the front of each forewing. Each hind wing has a very long tail. The butterflies have a wingspan of about 5 cms.
The species is found as various subspecies across south-east Asia, including
The subspecies parmatum (Gray, ) is found on the tropical north-east coast of Australia including
Further reading :
Michael F. Braby,
Butterflies of Australia,
CSIRO Publishing, Melbourne 2000, vol. 1, pp. 255-256.
Caspar Stoll, in Pieter Cramer:
Description de Papillons Exotiques,
Uitlandsche kapellen voorkomende in de drie waereld-deelen,
Volume 4 (1780), pp. 60-61, figs. E,F, and also Plate 318, figs E,F.
George Robert Gray,
Lepidopterous Insects : Papilionidae,
Catalogue of Lepidopterous Insects in the Collection of the British Museum,
Part 1, Volume 3 (1853), p. 30, No. 141,
Part 1, Volume 3 (1853), Plate 3, Figure 2.
(updated 7 December 2009, 6 June 2020)