The Scarce Swallowtail is a widespread and often common species across southern Europe.
In Bulgaria it is also generally common and widespread occuring in lower lying regions and up to moderate altitudes. It is rather more frequently encountered than the Swallowtail (Papilio machaon).
In some years Scarce Swallowtails seem to be especially common and on some tours we have seen this species at almost every site we have visited. It can be found puddling in groups (sometimes quite large groups), on damp mud or sand by streams and rivers as some of the photos here show.
Like the Swallowtail several may be seen together hill-topping on the summits of lower hills.
Warm scrubland and woodland glades and edges especially where Blackthorn (Prunus spinosa), it's principle foodplant, grows. Also parks, gardens and orchards.
Although the larvae are quite well camoflagued thay can be found fairly easily by searching the leafy twigs of Blackthorn.
Recorded in 136 (7.2%) of the 1900 10km squares of Bulgaria.
Last recorded in June 2019
Recorded date range (Adult): 04 May to 12 August