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Cabbage White (Pieris rapae)

Cabbage White

Appearance: Upperside white with light grey wing tips and one (males) or two (females) black spots on the fore wings. Underside of the fore wings mostly white with two black spots. Underside of the hind wings light yellow.
Wingspan: 4,0–5,0 cm
Season: Several generations all around the year.
Range: Common and widespread, mainly in the coastal regions of Australia except for the north and north-west.
Habitat: Different habitats, in particular suburban areas, gardens, and farmland.
Photo: Lane Cove NP, NSW, 26 / 01 / 2009.


The Cabbage White was originally a European and Asian species that got introduced to Australia, New Zealand, and North America. Today, the Cabbage White is very common and widespread across the more densely populated regions of Australia. It can be found in particular in suburban areas and gardens where the butterflies are often seen feeding from flowers. The caterpillars feed on a variety of plants, including cabbage, and are considered a pest in Europe.

Additional Photos

Cabbage White
Males have a single black spot on the upperside of the fore wing. (Homebush Bay, NSW, 05 / 04 / 2010)
Cabbage White
Females have two extended, black spots on the upperside of the fore wing. (Blue Mountains NP, NSW, 19 / 02 / 2011)
Cabbage White
The hind wing underside base colour is light yellow rather than white. (Homebush Bay, NSW, 05 / 04 / 2010)
Cabbage White
Mating Pair. (Ingleburn, NSW, 24 / 04 / 2010)
Cabbage White
Another view of the yellow hind wing underside, here of a female. (Como, WA, 14 / 10 / 2012)