Description 1 1/2-1 5/8" Rounded
wings. Above, delicate white. Below,
cream-colored to yellowish; HW veins have
light to heavy gray-olive or brown scaling;
extreme forms also have scales along
veins of other wing surfaces.
Some summer broods lack dark
vein-scaling. Sex spots (1 for male, 2 for
female) occasionally appear on FW above,
often blurred. If FW tips gray, vein-scaling is
Life Cycle Pale, vase-shaped egg.
Caterpillar forest-green with darker or
yellowish back and side stripes. Host
plants include wide array of crucifers, such
as cresses (Thlaspi, Arabis, and Barbarea)
Flight April-August in 2 or 3 broods.
Habitat Deciduous and coniferous
woodlands, forest clearings and edges,
roadsides, and in cool, moist places.
Range Cool, temperature portions of
Northern Hemisphere. In North America,
Alaska to Labrador south to Arizona,
Montana, Lake States, and New York.
Absent from S. California and entire
Discussion Many lepidopterists have
speculated about the Veined White's
changed habitat following the introduction
of the Cabbage White in 1860. The
Cabbage White is reputed to have taken
over as the common white of open
landscapes, while the Veined White
appears to have retreated to the
woodlands, where it is better able to
But recent studies also suggest that these
habitat changes may be the effect of
human land use and not just interspecies
competition. Both species have been found
to coexist in many marginal places. The
Veined White may well consist of more
than one biological species, but until more
distinctions are made it will be considered
one variable, circumpolar species.
Veined White or "Mustard White"