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Pieris rapae

Common Name: Cabbage White
Pieris rapae
Pieris rapae

Scientific Classification

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Pieridae
Genus: Pieris
Species: Pieris rapae

Conservation Status

Identifying Features

Cabbage white butterflies are small, with a 2" wingspan. They are white in color, and their forewings have a black tip.

Males have a black spot on each wing, and females have two black spots.

Habitat & Range

Cabbage white butterflies are live in fields and open areas throughout North America and the rest of the world. They were introduced to North America, and is native to Europe.


These butterflies are one of the first to emerge in spring. They feed on dandelions, clovers, asters, and mustards.

Life Cycle

The larval stage are known as cabbage worms, and molt four times before forming a chrysalis. They may stay in this form for a couple of weeks or if pupating later in the year, overwinter and emerge as a butterfly in the spring.

Featured image by Stephen Patrick


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