Black-veined White

Aporia crataegi (a-POOR-ee-uh kra-TEE-jee)

Black-Veined White - imago - Thatcham - 20-May-06 (0130) [REARED]
Photo © Pete Eeles
 

Wingspan
69 - 76mm

Checklist Number
58.005

Family:PieridaeSwainson, 1820
Subfamily:PierinaeDuponchel, 1835
Tribe:PieriniSwainson, 1820
Genus:AporiaHübner, [1819]
Subgenus:  
Species:crataegi(Linnaeus, 1758)

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Introduction

First listed as a British species in 1667, this large butterfly became extinct in the British Isles around 1925 with its last remaining stronghold in the south-east of England. This species was always considered a rarity in the British Isles by early entomologists, although it is often very common on the continent.

This species forms discrete colonies that fluctuate greatly in numbers, although the cause of the ultimate demise of this species in the British Isles is a mystery since its foodplants can be found in abundance in all of its former sites. Disease (fostered by poor autumn weather), relatively-mild winters and increased predation by birds have all been suggested as potential causes of this demise. There was a successful reintroduction in Fife, Scotland, although this was only able to survive with appropriate protection of the larvae from birds. This species is extinct in the British Isles. This species was concentrated primarily in the southern half of England and south Wales. The strongholds were in Kent (which held 40 colonies), Hampshire, Gloucestershire and Sussex.

Aporia crataegi

This species was first defined in Linnaeus (1758) as shown here (type locality: Sweden).

Black-Veined White - imago - Gola del Infernaccio, Monti Sibillini, Italy - 16-Jun-08 (2)

Male
Photo © Pete Eeles

Black Veined White - Spain - 21 June 2012

Male Underside
Photo © Nigel Kiteley

Black-Veined White - imago - Lauenensee, Lauenen, Switzerland - 10-Jul-11

Female
Photo © Pete Eeles

Black-Veined White - imago - Stockbridge Down - 27-Jul-07 [Neil Hulme]

Female Underside
Photo © Neil Hulme

Photo Album ...


History

The table below shows a chronology of vernacular names attributed to this species. Any qualification of the name (e.g. male, female) is shown in brackets after the name.

YearNameReference
1699White Butterfly with Black VeinsPetiver (1695-1703)
1766Black-veined WhiteHarris (1766)
1832HawthornRennie (1832)

Conservation Status

No conservation action is relevant for this species.

Habitat

Early records of this species showed that it occurred in orchards, lanes, gardens, meadows and wherever its foodplants occurred in abundance.

Distribution

1.1 Extinct
 

This species is extinct in the British Isles.

Life Cycle

In the British Isles, this species emerged in late June, peaked in July and survived into August. This butterfly has one generation each year.

Imago

An interesting characteristic of this species is that the female, by rubbing her wings together, loses many of her scales, resulting in an almost-transparent look when compared with the white wings of the male. The purpose of this behaviour remains a mystery.

Description to be completed.

Aporia crataegi

Black-veined White pair - Central Southern France 650m ASL 11-June-2016

Photo © Chris Jackson
11-Jun-2016

Black-Veined White - imago - Thatcham - 20-May-06 (0129) [REARED]

Photo © Pete Eeles
20-May-2006

Black-veined White - imago - Creu de Perves, Spain - 24-Jun-10 (1)

Photo © Pete Eeles

Black-Veined White - imago - Monti Sibillini, Italy - 15-Jun-08 (5)

Photo © Pete Eeles
15-Jun-2008

Black-Veined White - imago - Gola del Infernaccio, Monti Sibillini, Italy - 16-Jun-08 (2)

Photo © Pete Eeles
16-Jun-2008

Black-Veined White - imago - Monti Sibillini, Italy - 15-Jun-08 (3)

Photo © Pete Eeles
15-Jun-2008

Black-veined White mating + Black-veined moth Bulgaria 18-June-2013

Photo © jamesweightman
18-Jun-2013

Black Veined White - Spain - 21 June 2012

Photo © Nigel Kiteley
20-Jun-2012

Black-Veined White - imago - Monti Sibillini, Italy - 15-Jun-08 (2)

Photo © Pete Eeles
15-Jun-2008

Black-Veined White - imago - Stockbridge Down - 27-Jul-07 (2) [Neil Hulme]

Photo © Neil Hulme
Hampshire

Black-Veined White - imago - Gola del Infernaccio, Monti Sibillini, Italy - 16-Jun-08 (3)

Photo © Pete Eeles
16-Jun-2008

Black-Veined White - imago - Lauenensee, Lauenen, Switzerland - 10-Jul-11

Photo © Pete Eeles

Black-Veined White - imago - Stockbridge Down - 27-Jul-07 [Neil Hulme]

Photo © Neil Hulme
Hampshire

Black-Veined White - imago - Gola del Infernaccio, Monti Sibillini, Italy - 16-Jun-08 (4)

Photo © Pete Eeles
16-Jun-2008

Black-Veined White - imago - Monti Sibillini, Italy - 15-Jun-08 (1)

Photo © Pete Eeles
15-Jun-2008

Black Veined White - Spain - 20 June 2012

Photo © Nigel Kiteley
21-Jun-2012

Black-Veined White - imago - Unknown location - Unknown date (2) [Guy Padfield]

Photo © Guy Padfield

Black-Veined White - imago - Gola del Infernaccio, Monti Sibillini, Italy - 16-Jun-08 (1)

Photo © Pete Eeles
16-Jun-2008

Black-Veined White - imago - Thatcham - 20-May-06 (0130) [REARED]

Photo © Pete Eeles
20-May-2006

Black-Veined White - imago - Thatcham - 14-May-06 (0119) [REARED]

Photo © Pete Eeles
14-May-2006

Photo Album ...


Ovum

Eggs are laid in batches of between 100 and 200, generally on the underside of a leaf of the foodplant. Eggs are bright yellow when first laid, darkening after a few days. The eggs hatch in 2 to 3 weeks, depending on temperature.

Black-Veined White - ovum - Thatcham - 15-May-05 [REARED]

Photo © Pete Eeles
15-May-2005

Female Black-veined White with ova - 3 June 2013 - Alpes-Maritimes

Photo © CFB
03-Jun-2013

BVW

Photo © Tony Moore
Near Silves, Portugal. 04.05.14.
08-May-2014

Black-veined White eggs A. crataegi 22.07.2014 Provence [Lynn Fomison]

Photo © Lynn Fomison

Photo Album ...


Larva

The larva eats the majority of its eggshell on hatching before joining a communal larval web. Groups of larvae leave the web to feed side by side but remain within the web through the winter while still very small, in the 3rd instar. After emerging in the spring, the larvae continue this pattern of communal living, continuing to forage in groups. Larvae are particularly sensitive and will drop from the foodplant if disturbed.

As the larvae grow, they tend to form smaller groups that form sub-communities, each group creating their own web on which to rest. Ultimately, the gregarious behaviour is abandoned, and the fully-grown larvae disperse to feed individually prior to pupation.

The primary larval foodplants are Blackthorn (Prunus spinosa) and Hawthorns (various) (Crataegus spp.).

Black-Veined White - larva - Thatcham - 15-Apr-06 (2) [REARED]

Photo © Pete Eeles
15-Apr-2006

Black-Veined White - larva - Thatcham - 15-Apr-06 (3) [REARED]

Photo © Pete Eeles
15-Apr-2006

Black-Veined White - larva - Thatcham - 15-Apr-06 (5) [REARED]

Photo © Pete Eeles
15-Apr-2006

Black-Veined White - larva - Thatcham - 15-Apr-06 (9) [REARED]

Photo © Pete Eeles
15-Apr-2006

Black-Veined White - larva - Thatcham - 17-Apr-06 [REARED]

Photo © Pete Eeles
17-Apr-2006

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1st Instar

Description to be completed.

2nd Instar

Description to be completed.

3rd Instar

Description to be completed.

4th Instar

Description to be completed.

5th Instar

Description to be completed.

Pupa

The pupa is attached to a stem of the foodplant by a silk girdle and the cremaster and is often quite conspicuous and easy to find. This stage typically lasts around 3 weeks, depending on temperature.

Black-Veined White - pupa - Thatcham - 13-May-06 (0116) [REARED]

Photo © Pete Eeles
13-May-2006

Black-Veined White - pupa - Thatcham - 26-Apr-06 (3) [REARED]

Photo © Pete Eeles
26-Apr-2006

Black-Veined White - pupa - Thatcham - 26-Apr-06 [REARED]

Photo © Pete Eeles
26-Apr-2006

Black-Veined White - pupa - Gola del Infernaccio, Monti Sibillini, Italy - 16-Jun-08 (1)

Photo © Pete Eeles
16-Jun-2008

Black-Veined White - pupa - Gola del Infernaccio, Monti Sibillini, Italy - 16-Jun-08 (2)

Photo © Pete Eeles
16-Jun-2008

Black-Veined White - pupa - Gola del Infernaccio, Monti Sibillini, Italy - 17-Jun-08 (1)

Photo © Pete Eeles
17-Jun-2008

Black-Veined White - pupa - Gola del Infernaccio, Monti Sibillini, Italy - 17-Jun-08 (2)

Photo © Pete Eeles
17-Jun-2008

Photo Album ...


Aberrations

Description to be completed.

Click here to see the aberration descriptions and images for this species.

Similar Species

No similar species found.

Videos


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The following links provide additional information on this butterfly.

References

The species description provided here references the following publications:

ReferenceDetails
Duponchel (1835) Duponchel, P.A.J. (1835) Histoire naturelle des lépidoptères ou papillons de France, par M. J.-B. Godart. Continuée par P.-A.-J. Duponchel. Diurnes. Supplément aux tomes premier et deuxième.
Hübner (1819) Hübner, J. (1819) Verzeichniss bekannter Schmettlinge.
Harris (1766) Harris, M. (1766) The Aurelian. Edition 1.
Linnaeus (1758) Linnaeus, C. (1758) Systema Naturae. Edition 10.
Petiver (1695-1703) Petiver, J. (1695-1703) Musei Petiveriani centuria prima-decima, rariora naturae continens.
Rennie (1832) Rennie, J. (1832) A conspectus of the butterflies and moths found in Britain, with their English and systematic names, times of appearances, sizes, colours, their caterpillars, and various localities.
Swainson (1820) Swainson, W. (1820) Zoological illustrations, or Original figures and descriptions of new, rare, or interesting animals : selected chiefly from the classes of ornithology, entomology, and conchology, and arranged on the principles of Cuvier and other modern zoologists (Vol.1).