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Olympia marble

Olympia marble (Euchloe olympia)
Photos © Mary Kay Rubey

Features and Behaviors

The Olympia marble is a small butterfly with a wingspan of about one and one-half to two inches. The wings are generally cream-colored on the upper surface. The underside of the hindwing has some yellow-green marbling. The caterpillar is gray with yellow stripes on its upper sides and white stripes on the lower sides.

The Olympia marble butterfly may be found in open areas, dunes and prairies along the Mississippi and Illinois rivers and in northeastern Illinois. Adults are active in April and May The males fly along ridges and hilltops. The female lays one egg on a flower bud of a host plant, mainly members of the rock cress family. The caterpillar feeds on the flowers and fruits. Hibernation is accomplished in the pupal stage. The adult feeds on the flower nectar of rock cresses, chickweed and phlox.

Illinois Range


​Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Pieridae

Illinois Status: common, native