Eastern Bath White
Introduction: There are, apparently, two species of Bath White in
Europe and N Africa - Pontia daplidice and Pontia edusa. The
differences appear to be biochemical. So to all intents and purposes the species
are impossible to separate except in the high tech laboratory. Both species will
be treated as one here.
Distribution: Most of Europe, migrating northwards into S UK (very
rare), N Germany and S Scandinavia. Migrating individuals from the south
presumable reinforce existing populations further north.
The split between daplidice and edusa occurs roughly along the
eastern border of France. To the west is daplidice, to the east is edusa. North
Africa hosts daplidice. Often common but can crop up just about anywhere as
Identification: As for Bath White Pontia daplidice: Superficially similar to the Dappled Whites,
Euchloe species plus the other Bath Whites. Follow this link for the to the
Flight time: As for Bath White Pontia daplidice: Flies from the beginning of spring (e.g. March in S
Europe, later further north) until late summer and becoming more frequent as the
Habitat: As for Bath White Pontia daplidice: Can appear
just in about any open grassy or flowery place. Typically around bare ground
with the foodplant Reseda sp. (e.g. Weld, Mignonette). Bare ground could
be stony or rocky places or disturbed ground around cultivated areas or
roadsides. Also takes various Brassicaceae (Cabbages).
Behaviour: As for Bath White Pontia daplidice: This is a very
strong flier. It is usually seen flying very rapidly and directly across usually
dry places with grass or stones. It is attracted to flowers but only stays
briefly before flying on. In the morning though it can be found warming up on
rocks in the sun when close approach is easiest.
In flight it can be separated with with 90% certainty from the Dappled Whites
- not sufficient for recording purposes but a good indication. This species
flies with shorter, faster wing beats and the wings appear more pointed when in
flight than the Dappled Whites.