Plant-Insect Interaction: Cabbage white butterfly on giant ironweed

Cabbage white butterfly (Pieris rapae, Pieridae) feeding on nectar from a giant ironweed (Vernonia gigantea, Asteraceae). Photographed 08/22/2010 near Blissfield Michigan.

While the larvae of cabbage white butterflies (Pieris rapae, Pieridae) feed on plants of the mustard family (Brassicaceae), the adults seem to feed any any source of nectar.  Here a cabbage white is feeding on the nectar from a giant ironweed (Vernonia gigantea, Asteraceae).  This cabbage white is a male since it has one black spot on each forewing.  Females have two.

The larvae not only feed on plants of the mustard family, they’re serious pests of mustard plants, especially cabbage.  Farmers refer to them as the imported cabbage worm.

Advertisements

About Jeremy Sell

Science and nature nerd.
This entry was posted in Botany, Ecology, Entomology, Organism Interactions and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Plant-Insect Interaction: Cabbage white butterfly on giant ironweed

  1. Pingback: » Monday links

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s