Leptidea sinapis - photo © Sofia Apergi

Leptidea sinapis, Grevena - photo © Sofia Apergi

Leptidea sinapis


Leptidea sinapis is a butterfly of the family Pieridae on the island of Crete, Greece.

Scientific name

Leptidea sinapis (Linnaeus, 1758)

Common name

Wood White


Family: Pieridae > Subfamily: Dismorphiinae >  Genus: Leptidea


Male to female: 35-40 mm


This small white butterfly has a general white color in the wings with grey or yellow markings. The underside of the hindwings has a characteristic pattern of grey markings with yellowish and whitish areas in the discal and postdiscal areas.

The male can be distinguished from the female by the black spot at the tip of the forewings that are greatly reduced in the female and by the prominent white patch on the underside of the antennae clubs.


The butterfly flies weakly but rarely settles to rest. It rarely opens the wings when resting and flies even on very heavily clouded days.


Leptidea sinapis in Crete live in extensive grasslands, woodland clearings, and fringes or sparse pine forests.

Food plant

The larva lives on Fabaceae plants.

Flight Period

The butterfly flies in 2-3 generations per year.

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

The Wood White has limited distribution in Crete. Because of the distinctive wing shape, it can’t be confused with any other Pieridae butterflies of the island. The round shape of their wings, as well as the big spot at the apex, help their identification.


Least Concern (LC)

(*European Red List of Butterflies, 2010)

Leptidea Sinapis Distribution Map

*based on http://www.pamperis.gr/THE_BUTTERFLIES_OF_GREECE/MAPS.html

Leptidea sinapis location map based on greek butterflies distributions map by L.N. Pamperis (revised 2021)