Also called the ‘Small Cabbage White’, the upperside ground colour is creamy white with greyish wingtips, the male having the single greyish spot near the centre of the forewing, the female sporting two. Wingspan 50mm. Similar to Large White (Pieris brassicae).
The caterpillar feeds on cultivated brassicas, nasturtiums, and assorted wild crucifers and Wild Mignonette. The Small White can be even more of a pest than the Large White, yet it is affected by the same predators and parasites which helps to keep their numbers down.
The adults fly March to October in two or more broods. Found in flowery places of all kinds, especially gardens, allotments, and other cultivated land. Common and widespread. One of the world’s commonest butterflies and a strong migrant.
All photographs taken various times and places in Staffordshire. © Pete Hillman.