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Orange Sulphur, White Form - Oklahoma - Colias eurytheme - female

Orange Sulphur, White Form - Oklahoma - Colias eurytheme - Female
Bartlesville, Washington County, Oklahoma, USA
October 23, 2007
Wing top shot in the same park, three weeks later.

Images of this individual: tag all
Orange Sulfur in Oklahoma - Colias eurytheme - male - female Orange Sulfur in Oklahoma - Colias eurytheme - male - female Orange Sulphur, White Form - Oklahoma - Colias eurytheme - female

Moved from Orange Sulphur.

Moved from Clouded Sulphur.

The sulphur in the
background is most likely a male Colias eurytheme and by association it could be inferred that the one in the foreground is a female of the same species. However, white form females of C. philodice and C. eurytheme are almost impossible to separate in the field.

Clouded Sulphur white form
Thank you for your comment, Howell. Perhaps the image here:
will help. I don't know why, but there seems to be a missing link in my photos and you may have missed this. On the other hand, I know nothing about differentiation of butterflies in the field or anywhere else, for that matter, so I will differ to you on identification!

These are definitely eurytheme, not Clouded Sulphurs. The white form female philodice can often be separated from the white form female eurytheme by the HW outer margin. In philodice the HW outer margin will only have a smooth solid black border, while eurytheme most often has an irregular and wider black border, many times with diffuse white markings within the black border.

And as Howell stated, the interaction with the male Orange Sulphur practically solidifies the likelihood that this is in fact a female Orange Sulphur. Their behavior was courting behavior, as you can see the female's abdomen raised in this photo, and the picture series you mentioned. This is a behavior I have witnessed many times in courting whites/sulphurs.

for your support. There apparently is a lot of confusion about separating these two species. I have found several more eurytheme on the philodice pages. Part of the confusion, I believe, is that a visually impaired contributor is giving other people a wrong ID on these. That's unfortunate and I don't know what can be done about it.

What Can Be Done About It
I'll tell you what can be done about it. Just tell me about it. Pretty simple, I know, but had I not just happened by this page by accident, I still wouldn't have known about it. You helped me many times, (thank you again) Howell, on my pages of mis-identified Butterflies, but you didn't mention there was another problem. I have found a lot of times people don't tell other people things because they don't want to hurt their feelings or something like that. But, often times, like in my case, I wouldn't have been hurt if you had told me that. Actually, I feel more hurt that you had to talk about it behind my back, so to speak, instead of just telling me personally. I'm really trying to learn, despite what you or others might think, so please just next time, feel free to tell me I was 100% wrong! If I don't know I'm wrong, I cannot correct being wrong.

I hope I don't sound like a jerk, because I am not trying to be one. As I know you're not either, so don't think I was implying that, either, please! Should I have posted this here or buried it in the forums?

I was really
hoping one of the editors would step in here and offer a suggestion. But none did. I am a mere contributor like yourself. Sometimes people are resistant to corrections as is evidenced by the fourth comment from the top above. This is a sticky situation that I had trouble finding a way to present in a such a way that it wouldn't be potentially embarassing. I didn't mean to go "behind your back' as you say. As I stated above, I was just hoping someone else, preferably an editor, would butt in and offer a solution. But that didn't happen and I offer my apologies for not being more direct.

Howell, as you stated about the "fourth comment" from above - I think DJ was saying he will "defer" to you, not "differ" with you. I don't think Mr. O'Connell is resistant to change, he seems like a very nice guy!

Ob, by the way, Howell.... didn't you get my e-mail about a month and a half ago? I hope it didn't get lost.

I need to proofread better myself. I didn't notice I had mistyped your name as "O'Connell" instead of "O'Donnell." Sorry about that! My apologies on that.

I don't
recall getting an email from you. Which address did you use?

Rather than give it out here, let me just say I used the one that's displayed on my profile page here at

I had commented about your nice homepage and the fact that we aren't that far from each other.

I meant
which of my email addresses did you use. Thanks for the comment about my home page. I'm in the process of revising it.

E-Mail Address
Howell, I used the one that is prefaced with only "four letters" at, if this helps.

Damn the spellcheck, full speed ahead!
My apology - I did indeed mean defer, NOT differ! Yikes! I didn't catch it even after reading it over five or six times! I gotta take my vitamins to try to stave off these senior moments!
PS I worked about 25 years for an oil company. I know - big polluters ravaging the planet. I did do environmental monitoring, though, so maybe that counts for something. How about you?

No need
to apologise. I should have caught the meaning from the context. But, yeah, I've had some of those senior moments too. My career in chemistry was pretty much limited to ten years of schooling, including about a year of postdoctoral work. Then a family situation led me to change course. But I've always considered myself to be a scientist. I've always loved the outdoors-as a fisherman, hunter and camper earlier in life- then as a student of birds, plants and bugs, including Leps and Odes, and more recently as a nature photographer. I've had an interest in environmental concerns for many years.
The petroleum industry is vital to the economic well being of our country, not only for fuel but also such things as plastics, tires, pharmaceuticals and a host of other things. So you needn't be apologetic for your work if that was what I detected in your statment. Most all industries are polluters to one degree or another.

Thanks to all
I am glad that we are all now on the same page and hopefully all sensitive issues have been resolved. Let me be frank as well: I enjoy taking photos of these beautiful creatures and sharing those photos with others. I am no entomologist but I was steered to this web site to post my photos so that I could learn about the insects and perhaps add data to the collection. I will make mistakes (like linking two photos taken weeks apart) and I will ALWAYS welcome constructive criticism. As a retired research chemist, I appreciate the necessity to make sure all data are accurate and any conclusions drawn from the data are reasonable. Please continue to review my submissions with a critical eye and an understanding heart. I will do my best to do better.

I too
have a chemistry background. We all make mistakes, don't we. I guess it's my science background that gets me in trouble here sometimes. I've decided to become a passive user and let someone else do the commenting from now on. That said, we should all strive to be the best that we can be in whatever we do.

Please don't
Please don't stop commenting. If it weren't for your comments I would have likely never taken a look at these beyond the thumbnail images. I think there's already too few people who comment. Maybe just add a qualifier to your comments, that way it gets your suggestion/correction out there and the person to whom it's addressed can chew on it without "feeling" corrected. I've started doing that lately by saying "Probably is ..." or "Most likely is ..." or even "I believe this is actually ..." I'd hate to see you stop commenting altogether though.

If you look
at my initial comment I did use qualifiers. It was only when I misunderstood the response that I got a little more direct.

Yes, Please Don't
Yes, please don't stop commenting, Howell. It is through your efforts alone that I have finally found out the differences between a Clouded Sulphur and an Orange Sulphur. I still can't see the difference, so that's why they will become verboten for me from now on, but at least I know the descriptive differences. Thanks for that. It is I who should say he will never comment again. (At least that's what I'm thinking a lot of people are hoping for probably!)

Kenneth, I put two comparison photos of the two (unfortunately only dorsal view) in the see also section of the info page. Hopefully that will help a little bit.

Thanks, J.D.
Thanks, J.D., but you didn't have to go to any special trouble just for me. I am a visually impaired contributor and most things are literally lost on me. (Although, the black edges on their hindwings do stand out as being noticeably different. That should be useful to a lot of people.)

I'm beginning to think that the ventral view of these two species are so variable as to make a comparison between them from that alone near impossible.

Thanks for the corrections
Thank you and Howell for educating a novice! I was going strictly by what I had been told by another contributor. Live and learn!

No worries
That's the great part about a community like BugGuide ... you can get quite reliable and accurate IDs due to so many levels of expertise and experience coming together and in effect giving a consensus on an ID rather than one person. Glad I could help. And thanks to Howell for spotting this one.

You have
the right to be wrong. These are not Clouded Sulphurs. The two images should not be linked either as they were taken at different times.

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