i saw that wild parsnip was blooming a few days ago and made a mental note. you know by now i am sucker for all botanical umbellates. as often happens to me, when i went to finally photograph them, they had just finished blooming, only a suspicion of their yellow flowers remained. i was just about to walk away when i noticed this little guy on one of the leaves. a caterpillar that i thought was a monarch, but that research revealed to be a black swallowtail caterpiller! ding, ding, ding. all my senses lit up in delight. if you can, zoom in on him and notice the comical little face on his butt that’s meant to fool predators. it makes me wonder…do animals really understand a frown?
black swallowtail caterpillar on wild parsnip (Papilio polyxenes)