Indra subspecies in Utah
  The Southwest Area

In the St. George area, populations appear to be a mix of genes from Indra populations from the northwest, the southwest, and the east. This creates a great degree of variation.

Variation in the St. George Indra Swallowtail population. Some individuals are minori-like (lower right), some are nevadensis or fordi-like (upper left), and some even "superficially" look like pergamus (lower left).

P. i. minori/kaibabensis genes from the east and southeast seem to have great influence in St. George populations, especially in 5th instar characteristics, but also in adult characteristics. In fact most of the St. George 5th instars show various degrees of pink in their bands (next two photos). It is recognized that some of this may be a result of independent adaptation to the reddish-colored Navajo sandstone which is predominant in the area. Other 5th instars are white banded like nevadensis and fordi.

Pink St. George 5th instar Pink St. George 5th instar (bottom) and a cream-colored 5th instar from central Nevada


Pink St. George 5th instar (bottom)

The "?" near St. George on the map above represents a 70 mile gap between the nearest know P. i.minori population east of Kanab, Utah and the St. George population. It is suspected that minori populations extend closer to St. George from the east, or in other words to the west of Kanab, but searches in good habitat to the present time have failed to locate them. There is a lack of herbarium records for LFPs in this area.

However, during Spring 2000 I discovered a population in the newly established Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument (BLM's Arizona Strip Disctict), that is just 60 miles west of a known population of kaibabensis near Kanab Overlook and about the same distance S of St. George populations. With collecting permit I sampled this population. So far I know what the larvae look like (next photo). Eclosion will be Spring 2001. It appears that some of the minori/kaibabensis characteristics in St George may be due to gene flow from points east or southeast.

Gold Butte, NV specimen compared with larvae in Grand Cyn.-Parashant National Monument. Note the pink hue in the specimen to the right compared with the caterpillar from the Gold Butte, NV area.

Southeast Utah