Pontia protodice

Pontia protodice
Checkered White
Underside of the female
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Pieridae
Genus: Pontia
Species: P. protodice
Binomial name
Pontia protodice
(Boisduval & Leconte, 1830) [1]
  • Pieris protodice

The Checkered White (Pontia protodice), also called Southern Cabbage Butterfly, is a common North American butterfly in the family Pieridae. Its green larva is a type of cabbage worm.



Underside of the male

The upper side of the wings are white and marked with black and gray, more so on the female. The underside of the hindwings are marked with extensive yellow-brown veins. The wingspan is 1.25-1.75 in.


This butterfly may be seen flying in fields or along roadsides.

Nectar plants

Checkered Whites have been seen nectaring on mustards, composites, and alfalfa.

Host plants


Its host plants include Brazos Rockcress (Arabis petiolaris), Sicklepod (Senna obtusifolia), Black Mustard (Brassica nigra), Broccoli (Brassica oleraceae italica), Brussel Sprouts (Brassica oleraceae gemmifera), Cabbage (Brassica oleraceae capitata), Cauliflower (Brassica oleraceae botrytis), Turnip (Brassica rapa), Pinnate Tansy-Mustard (Descurainia pinnata), Fixweed Tansy-Mustard (Descurainia sophia), Prairie Pepperweed (Lepidium densiflorum), Virginia Pepper-Grass (Lepidium virginicum), Radish (Raphanus sativus), Tumble Mustard (Sisymbrium altissimum), and Field Pennycress (Thlaspi arvense).

See also

  • Pieris brassicae
  • Pieris rapae