Swallowtails: southern tailed birdwing
(Troides [syn.Ornithoptera] meridionalis)
(Lepidoptera: Papilionidae: Papilioninae)
Profile prepared by the Xerces Society
The southern tailed birdwing is endangered by the logging of its natural habitat and the uncontrolled development of plantations in Indonesia and Papua New Guinea.
IUCN status: Endangered
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The male of this large swallowtail has tailed hindwings, and is black, iridescent yellow-green and golden. The female is white and black with yellow markings.
The species occurs in lowland rainforest. The larval food plant is unknown.
Very rare and localized in extreme south-eastern Papua New Guinea and Indonesia (Irian Jaya).
This species is endangered by the logging of its natural habitat and the uncontrolled development of plantations throughout its range. Dealers prices are exceptionally high and pairs commonly sell for $1200 US and up.
Conservation needs include protecting known sites and curbing overcollecting. Some countries now control imports of this species.
Collins, N. Mark and Michael G. Morris. 1985. Threatened Swallowtail Butterflies of the World: The IUCN Red Data Book. IUCN, Cambridge, U.K. 401 pp. (see pp. 284 to 287).