New Jersey Butterflies

Clouded Sulphur

Colias philodice

Identification: Small—1.8" (slightly larger than Cabbage White). Almost never seen with wings open. Below: FW and HW lemon yellow with dark dusting primarily on HW. White spot on HW surrounded by pink, and a dark spot on FW. Some females of Clouded Sulphur and Orange Sulphur are quite whitish instead of yellow or orange, especially on the topside seen in flight. These are usually not identifiable to species in the field. The more extensive black edges on sulphurs in flight should prevent confusion with Cabbage White.

NJ Status and Distribution: Resident. Common and widespread throughout.

NJ Range Map-Clouded Sulphur

Habitat: Open, sunny, upland fields and wet meadows. Easily attracted to gardens with flowers such as Butterfly Bush, Purple Coneflower, asters, and milkweeds.

Flight Period: Several overlapping broods resulting in an extended flight period from April—October. Extreme dates: North Jersey 2/25—12/13; South Jersey 4/1—12/27(1/3).

Larval Food Plants: Clovers, Alfalfa, and many other legumes.

Overwintering Stage: Pupa.

Best Locations: Just about anywhere and everywhere.

Comments: Not always easy to separate from Orange Sulphur.



Clouded Sulphur

Roxbury Twp., Morris Co., NJ, 7/4/06, on Black-eyed Susan.


Clouded Sulphur

Clouded Sulphur, Kittatinny Valley SP, Sussex Co., NJ, 6/27/10, on Red Clover.


Clouded Sulphur

Female Clouded or Orange Sulphur, Kittatinny Valley SP, Sussex Co., NJ, 6/18/10, on Oxeye Daisy.


Clouded Sulphur

Clouded Sulphur egg on clover.