Colias crocea, Crete - photo © Ch. Almpantakis
Colias crocea is a butterfly of the family Pieridae on the island of Crete, Greece.
Colias crocea (Geoffroy, 1785)
Family: Pieridae > Subfamily: Coliadinae > Genus: Colias
Male to female: 45-50 mm
The Clouded Yellow has a characteristic intense yellow coloring, that is easily identifiable. The upper side of the wings is yellow to orange-yellow with a broad black margin on all the wings and a black spot at the end of the cell. The underside of the wings lacks the black borders and is lighter, with a more greenish tint, and has a white center spot, often with a smaller white or dark dot just above it.
Males and females are similar; the female has several yellow spots in the black margin, that there are not present in the male.
When feeding, the butterfly remains extremely alert and rarely settles for more than 3-4 seconds at a time. Both sexes fly very rapidly and purposefully, migrating in search of breeding sites, stopping for a day or two to refuel at nectar-rich hillsides. The butterfly never opens the wings when resting.
Colias crocea in Crete lives in the open land of all kinds, i.e. warm slopes, rocky places, seaside, cultivated areas, riverbanks, lakes.
The larva lives on Fabaceae (Leguminosae) plants.
The butterfly flies in 2-3 generations per year.
The butterfly has a unique appearance in Crete and can’t be confused with other butterflies of the island.
Least Concern (LC)
Colias Crocea Distribution Map
Colias crocea location map based on greek butterflies distributions maps by L.N. Pamperis (revised 2021)