Brown-veined whites – Belenois aurota

Brown-veined whites – Belenois aurota

Butterflies … a swarm, a rabble, a flight, a flock, a flutter … .. ..  whatever the collective noun for a lot of butterflies of the same species is,  the Brown-veined Whites – Belenois aurota – have been flying through our garden in droves these last few days.    It happens every year, some years with more butterflies than other years


This year they’ve been coming over in their hundreds.   They flutter in droves across the garden landing on plants as they go

 IMG_1048 Copy of IMG_1051

It’s very special to sit amongst them 🙂   Hubby and I did just that earlier today.  We sat under the shade in the garden …  it’s been terribly hot lately ..  and watched this silent show of little white butterflies fluttering all around us  …



They originate in the Kalahari, Northern Cape and migrate north/east over the interior.  During some years they have a population explosion where the numbers get so big that they eat all the leaves of the available food plants.  If the adults stayed in that area, there would not be any food left for their larvae so they move off towards the north/east and lay eggs as they go along.  They basically keep on flying until they die 🙁  but in some cases they actually reach the Indian Ocean and are often seen flying into the sea


11 Replies to “Brown-veined whites – Belenois aurota”

  1. Thank you for this little lesson. I saw what must have been thousdands of them yesterday (from afar they looked like moths) and I was scared there was an infestation somewhere. Very good to know it is just part of the normal course of nature. And close up they are beautiful

    Have a very happy 2013

  2. Thank you for some beautiful photos, may I do a link to this page from Clarens News, where people have been asking me about them, which led me to your blog? Where do you live? Can I enter your pics into our photo of the month competition? Please email me
    Thank you
    Craig Walters

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