DNA barcoding reveals widespread occurrence of Leptidea juvernica (Lepidoptera: Pieridae) in southern Finland

A1 Journal article (refereed)

Internal Authors/Editors

Publication Details

List of Authors: Lehtonen S., Lehtonen I., Teräs A., Varrela J., Virta P., Vesterinen E.J.
Publisher: Entomologiska Föreningen
Publication year: 2017
Journal: Entomologisk tidskrift
Volume number: 138
Issue number: 2
Start page: 151
End page: 159


DNA barcoding was used to identify 54 specimens of butterfly genus Leptidea collected
from various parts of southern Finland in 2011-2013. Results reveal the presence of both
the widespread Leptidea sinapis and its cryptic congener L. juvernica from several locations
throughout the southern Finland. Our sampling also reveals different habitat preferences
between these species in Finland: specimens collected from open, disturbed habitats
were mainly identified as L. juvernica, whereas specimens from forest habitats were all
found to represent L. sinapis. A morphometric analysis revealed that L. juvernica and L.
sinapis hardly differ by their fore wing shape, although males and females seem to differ
from each other. Our attempts to DNA barcode selected museum specimens failed and
we were not able to verify historical presence of L. juvernica in Finland. The recently
increased observations of Leptidea butterflies in large numbers in unusually open habitats
across the southern Finland together with our findings suggests ongoing rapid expansion
of L. juvernica in Finland.

Last updated on 2020-21-01 at 04:20