Cabbage Butterfly
( Pieris rapae )


2012-0403-01100110-LEP00167-Pieris_rapae[1233h10s,F,A,plant-flower]{JRyugo}-G.jpg

PHOTO COMMENT

IDENTIFICATION
Identification:Pieris rapae
(Linnaeus, 1758)
Common Name:Cabbage Butterfly
Life Stage:(A) adult

PHYLOGENY

Phylum:Arthropoda
Class:Insecta
Superorder:Holometabola
Order:Lepidoptera
Family:Pieridae
Subfamily:Pierinae
Tribe:Pierini
Genus:Pieris
Taxon Code:LEP00167
ITIS TSN#:188541

LOCATION DETAILS
Location
Lakeside Park, General, Lakeside Park, 666 Bellevue, Oakland
County:Alameda County
ECI Site#:CA01100110

RECOGNITION
Best distinguished from other whites by the black spots on the upperside of the forewing, and the yellow hindwing below. Adult: upperside of wings white or pale yellowish-white with black tip on forewing; upperside of female forewing has two black spots; male has one. Both sexes have one black spot well out along front margin on upperside of hindwing. Underside of forewing white with yellowish apex and two black discal spots in both sexes; underside of hindwing uniformly pale yellow in both sexes. Larva: green or bluish-green with thin yellow dorsal line (sometimes faint or absent) and lateral line composed of pairs of yellow spots, the anterior spot of each pair with a black central dot; body covered with short fine hair.
Wingspan
30-50 mm.
Body Length
Larva: Up to 35 mm
Colors
black & white

BIOLOGY
Food
Caterpillars eat cabbage and many other crucifers and related plants. Adults nectar from a very wide array of plants, including mustard, dandelion, red clover, aster, and mint.
Habitat
All habitats, including bogs, meadows, woods, and backyard gardens. Prefers open spaces but may also be found in treed areas, as noted above.
Flight Period
Adults fly from early spring to September; shorter season farther north, and longer season farther south.
Development
Females lay single eggs on undersides of host leaves. Overwinters as a pupa inside a chrysalis attached to some substrate. Two or three generations per year in southern Canada; up to several generations in the southern states.
Range
Throughout North America and many parts of the world.

HABITAT
All habitats, including bogs, meadows, woods, and backyard gardens. Prefers open spaces but may also be found in treed areas, as noted above.

CREDITS
Photographer
Eddie Dunbar

REFERENCES
  • Species Pieris rapae - Cabbage White - Hodges#4197. (http://bugguide.net/node/view/3259). Accessed March 12, 2016. [ IMAGES ]
  • Integrated Taxonomic Information System TSN#188541


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