It's about time you get to know the Yellow Birdwing...

The Yellow Birdwing (Troides helena), is a beautiful and large butterfly belonging to the Swallowtail family (Papilionidae). It is a vulnerable and protected species because activities such as unregulated collection from the wild and habitat loss via rapid development and deforestation are continuously taking place.

In the past, we used to be able to spot one quite easily and today, rarely one Yellow Birdwing can be seen in most parts of the island. But fortunately, more can be seen now in Teluk Bahang and at Penang Butterfly Farm, where they are consistently bred for exhibition and partly for releasing them back to the wild.

The Yellow Birdwing caterpillars feed only on a specific plant which is Aristolochia tagala, a rare and wild jungle climber. For the past 30 years, this plant has almost disappeared and caused a huge dwindling of the Yellow Birdwings. Planting back their host plants and reintroducing this butterfly is one of the ways we can increase their population and hopefully, save this butterfly.