Leptidea sinapis

Posted by Johan Dierckx (Wijnegem, Belgium) on 16 June 2012 in Animal & Insect and Portfolio.

Leptidea sinapis (NL: Boswitje / EN: Wood White / DE: Senfweißling / FR: Piéride de la moutarde, Piéride du lotier) is a butterfly of the Pieridae family. It is one of our daintiest butterflies with one of the slowest and delicate flights of all the Belgian butterflies. When at rest, the rounded tips of the forewings provide one of the main distinguishing features between this butterfly and other “whites”. Adults always rest with their wings closed. In flight, the male can be distinguished from the female by a black spot at the tip of the forewings that is greatly reduced in the female. Second brood individuals have reduced markings and the females, in particular, may have almost no black scales. This butterfly lives discrete colonies and was only recently separated from the visibly-identical Leptidea juvernica and Leptidea reali - forming a cryptic species complex with those species. Males are the more active of the two sexes and can be found patrolling for females, rarely stopping to rest or feed, especially in sunny weather. On dull days, the butterfly will rest on the underside of a leaf with its wings closed and, when disturbed, the butterfly will fly into thick undergrowth. The courtship of this butterfly is an amazing spectacle. Male and female face each other with wings closed and intermittently flash open their wings. At the same time, the male waves his proboscis and white-tipped antennae either side of the female’s head. If the female is receptive to these signals, the female bends her abdomen toward the male and the pair mate, staying coupled for around 30 minutes.
The specimen in the image is resting on Cephalanthera damasonium, a species belonging to the European terrestrial orchids.


Image: Leptidea sinapis – Visé (BE) – 17/05/2012

© Johan Dierckx

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All species are photographed in their natural habitat, without cutting or capturing them, and with maximal respect and the least possible disturbance to the environment.

(To see species in the same taxonomic rank (Kingdom, Phylum, Class, Order, Family, Genus), please use the tags provided with the image. The last tag is the Iso-code for the country where the image was taken. Image-date in DD/MM/YYYY format.)


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Aubélia from Kortrijk, Belgium

Een prachtige compositie, scherpte en kleuren. Ik wens je een fijne dag, Johan.

16 Jun 2012 8:05am

Bruno FROMENTIERE from Planète Terre, Europe, France

Excellente capture !

16 Jun 2012 5:07pm

omid from mashhad, Iran

wooooooooooooow!
very nice & so beautiful!!!!
Lovely!

16 Jun 2012 6:57pm

marc battault from clermont ferrand, France

gorgeous capture !!!
five stars !

16 Jun 2012 8:21pm

Harry from Apex, NC, United States

Graceful composition and excellent focus and detail.

17 Jun 2012 1:19am

Ddo from Verdun, France

Quelle delicatesse dans les ailes. Et si joli sur cette orchidée prete à fleurir

17 Jun 2012 8:28am

Canon EOS 400D
1/100 second
F/5.6
ISO 200
150 mm

animalia
arthropoda
insecta
lepidoptera
pieridae
leptidea
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