#1   Report Post  
Old 19-08-2004, 11:24 AM
Neil Jones
 
Posts: n/a
Default "Cabbage" whites etc.

On the subject of "Cabbage" white butterflies I thought I'd clarify matters.

I find it odd that someone hasn't contradicted Malcolm since he listed the
Green Veined White as a cabbage feeder. I have never seen it listed as such
in any literature. However I was once told by an expert that he had been
told by a MAFF expert that it was occasionally the case. Most butterfly
people would be suprised to hear this.
I don't know how accurate this is since butterflies do occasionally lay on
the wrong plants by accident particularly if they are related to the
foodplant but it doesn't mean the caterpillars survive.
Also the caterpillars of the Small and Green veined whites are very similar
in appearance.

The adults are similar and it is difficult to tell them apart with certainty
if they are flying more than a few feet away.
I have developed a rule of thim that usually works. That is if I am close to
habitation where cabbages might be found it is usually a Small White and If
I am not it is usually a Green Veined White. Not always accurate but more
usually right than wrong.

There are a number of White Butterflies in Britain

Wood white white - caterpillar feeds on Birds Foot trefoil and similar
plants
Green veined white - usually wild crucifers like javk by the hedge and
cuckoo flower. also Watercress.
Small white Cabbages, - nasturtiums and other crucifers
Large white -Ditto

Female Brimstone (male is Yellow female pale greenish white)- Buckthorns
Orange Tip (Female does not have orange tip) - Cuckoo Flower Jack by the
Hedge and a few similar others rarely.

There is a theory why these butterflies resemble each other.
Apparently the Large White is distateful to birds who quickly learn to avoid
it. THe others then gain protection from looking like it. This phenomenon
is well known in tropical butterlfies whi often have mimetic females and
non-mimetic males, which of course fits for the Orange Tip and Brimstone.

--
Neil Jones- http://www.butterflyguy.com/
"At some point I had to stand up and be counted. Who speaks for the
butterflies?" Andrew Lees - The quotation on his memorial at Crymlyn Bog
National Nature Reserve.

  #2   Report Post  
Old 19-08-2004, 08:20 PM
BAC
 
Posts: n/a
Default


"Malcolm" wrote in message
...

In article , Neil Jones
writes
On the subject of "Cabbage" white butterflies I thought I'd clarify

matters.

I find it odd that someone hasn't contradicted Malcolm since he listed

the
Green Veined White as a cabbage feeder.


snip

Green-veined whites are the first "white" to appear in my garden and are
commoner there, close to habitation and cabbages (!), in the early part
of the summer than either of the other two ever become, though I
acknowledge that might not be the case widely. And they have just
reappeared and I've currently got all three species in about similar
numbers.

And it is still definitely lumped with the other two as a "cabbage
white".


That's right - I took it you were referring to the three species as those
likely to be described as 'cabbage whites' (which, in my experience, is
true, they often are), not claiming that description as accurate or merited.
Only pieris brassicae is a 'true' cabbage white, surely?




Reply
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules

Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Grrrr....cabbage whites.... David.WE.Roberts United Kingdom 20 06-08-2013 11:06 AM
MINT-NEW IN BOX WHITES DFX METAL DETECTOR-EBAY-1 CENT CAINE Gardening 3 29-04-2005 06:18 PM
brand new NIB unused WHITES MXT meta detector-ebay-1 cent CAINE Gardening 0 22-04-2005 05:26 PM
Older Whites Lawn Tactor Jeremy & Monica Reigle Lawns 0 13-08-2003 01:48 AM
If Mugabe leaves, will any whites bother coming back? e[email protected] sci.agriculture 0 08-05-2003 08:56 PM


All times are GMT +1. The time now is 05:27 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright 2004-2018 GardenBanter.co.uk.
The comments are property of their posters.
 

About Us

"It's about Gardening"

 

Copyright © 2017