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What is it?

Our photographers have been busy exploring the intricacies of the Missouri outdoors. See if you can guess this month’s natural wonder. The answer is revealed below.

Zebra swallowtail

On the back cover and right is a zebra swallowtail by Noppadol Paothong. It is a woodland species. It is attracted to many flowers and sometimes gathers in groups at mud puddles and in creek beds. There are several broods in a year; spring specimens are smaller, with shorter tails, than those emerging later. The flight period extends from late March to October. Swallowtails seek out pawpaw trees to lay their eggs, and then the caterpillars feed on the pawpaw’s leaves.

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