Tag Archives: Green-veined White

photo of a Green -veined White and an Orange -tip plus an egg, on Lady's Smock

Orange -Tip and Green-veined White and an Orange -tip egg. Photo. Mark Pike

Mark visited Motcombe Meadows on 25/04/19 and although overcast and windy he found this delightful scene.

An Orange-tip and a Green-veined White sharing a Lady’s Smock flower where an Orange-tip has laid a tiny orange egg.

This egg would have been a whitish colour when it was first laid a few days ago, before turning bright orange. Green-veined White eggs are whitish when laid and do not change colour.

view of a Green-veined White nectaring on pink blossom

Green-veined White. Photo: Penny Hawes

This Green-veined White was photographed at Lodmoor by Penny on 28/06/18.

This is a common butterfly of damp grassland and woodland rides and is often mistaken for its cousin, the Small White. It can be found from spring through to autumn in parks and gardens, as well as less-urban areas such as meadows and woodland rides. The so-called green veins on the underside of the adults are, in fact, an illusion created by a subtle combination of yellow and black scales.

view of a Green-veined White resting on foliage showing upper fore and hind-wings

Green-veined White. Photo: Mike Gibbons

Mike photographed this late flying Green-veined White at Southbourne Undercliff on 5/11/17.

Whites can be quite confusing to ID, but the black markings on the tips of the fore-wing establishes this butterfly as a Green-veined White given the time of year it was seen.

Similar species are female Orange Tip, and Small White. However all have very different underside patterns which when seen makes for easier ID.

Text books suggest in England this butterfly has two broods, April-May and mid June-July, but that further south in Europe it has 2-4 overlapping broods March-October.

Does this suggest that this butterfly could be an immigrant?

Green-veined White mating refusal

Male and female Green-veined Whites under a leaf

Green-veined White. Photo: Penny Hawes

Male and female Green-veined whites under a leaf

Green-veined White. Photo: Penny Hawes

Penny did well to catch these two Green-veined Whites in Bournemouth Gardens on 20/07/2017. She is probably right in thinking the female is in a mating refusal posture. Some butterfly species have evolved this behaviour so that when the female is already mated she refuses the male, allowing her to get on with laying her fertilised eggs. This is done by her holding her wings wide open and raising her abdomen almost to a vertical position, often with the genitalia extruded.

Green-veined White at Sharford Bridge

Green-veined White hanging from a bluebell flower.
Green-veined White. Photo: Penny Hawes
Green-veined White hanging from a bluebell flower.

Green-veined White. Photo: Penny Hawes

A lovely shot from Penny, taken at Sharford Bridge (north of Corfe Castle) on 21 May. This butterfly is most easily identified from its underwing, but notice how the veins are more prominent on the upper wings than they are on the Large or Small White.