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Name of Little White Butterfly or Moth?

Posted by AnnaA SW PDL z8 (My Page) on
Tue, Sep 18, 12 at 1:19

This summer I have had an unusually high # of little white butterflies. Can't judge size too well, but I'd guess wingspan is less than 2"?

They are everywhere flying around my garden. I'm the one that has some critter boring holes in virtually every bell pepper, something that's never happened before, so I'm hunting for the offender.

Anyone know what type of butterfly? Or is it a moth? I think they are very attractive - dainty and feathery - but, no idea if they are good or bad visitors.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Name of Little White Butterfly or Moth?

always thought it was the white cabbage butterfly.
look for small pale yellow eggs in a clump standing up on edge on the underside of the leaves. they have green smooth caterpillars.
good or bad? depends.....

RE: Name of Little White Butterfly or Moth?

Their larvae -- velvety green caterpillars -- specialize in cole crops. Don't bother peppers.

RE: Name of Little White Butterfly or Moth?

Small white cabbage butterfly :)

RE: Name of Little White Butterfly or Moth?

I am not seeing black dots on its wings, but the pictures I'm looking at suggest it could be so pale, I can't see them from my vantage point. I do have a bed of kale, a bed of collards... I will hunt under their leaves tomorrow and see what I find.

Thanks everyone.

RE: Name of Little White Butterfly or Moth?

Cabbage whites always have some black markings. You could possibly have the native Margined White, closely related. The summer forms are all white with no black markings.

The caterpillars of the margined white eat crucifers. You would have to be near an undeveloped area to have these in the city. Otherwise, look more closely for black markings.

The cabbage white caterpillar also feeds on nasturtium.

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