Pieris brassicae (L.) Large white butterfly in Nelson

Dave Voice *1, Carol Muir 1, Travis Ashcroft 1

1 Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, PO Box 14018, Christchurch Airport, Christchurch, 8544, NZ

The new to New Zealand large white butterfly, Pieris brassicae, was first reported to MAF in May 2010. The colourful larvae were found feeding on Nasturtium in a home garden in Nelson.  On the wing, the adults can be difficult to differentiate from the long established small white butterfly Pieris rapae (L). The presentation outlines some differences between the two species, its distribution, and discusses the likely impact that P. brassicae is likely to have should it become widely established in New Zealand. This presentation will also outline what monitoring and control measures have been put in place by MAF, including response to public notices and media articles.

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