Adults are known to visit a wide variety of nectar plants.
In Greek mythology Battus was a shepherd that witnessed Hermes stealing Apollo’s cattle. The species philenor is currently unknown.
Individuals visit open fields looking for nectar. They are also seen flying along forest edges and throughout wooded areas. They only visit these habitats if the host plant is growing in the vicinity.
Males patrol the habitat looking for receptive females. After copulation, females look for host plants to lay their eggs on, usually on the underside of the leaves. The caterpillars feed on the host plant until they are ready to form their pupae.
In the warmest parts of their range, adults can be found year round. In the northern part of their range adults may only be found in the summer months.
Due to the host plant that the Pipevine Swallowtail feeds on it is believed that the species is unpalatable to birds. Some species of butterflies mimic the Pipevine for this very reason, including the Spicebush Swallowtail (Papilio troilus) and the black female form of the Eastern Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio glaucus).