Green butterflies are some of the most common colorful butterflies around the world. These butterflies often use their green color to their advantage as camouflage.
Many types of butterflies have the green ventral coloring of the wings which helps them escape predators. This ventral color makes them look like plant or tree leaves.
Many butterflies stop and become motionless when chased by a predator to make the most out of their camouflage green color.
Other butterflies have a combination of colors which include green nuances. These colors might not be tied to camouflage but rather to evolutionary traits.
Here are some of the most common green butterflies seen around the world today.
Table of Contents
1. Juniper Hairstreak
Juniper Hairstreak butterflies (Callophrys gryneus) are some of the most common green species in the United States. This butterfly has a base green color of the wings with olive and yellow nuances.
Brown veins and brown with white margins are specific to its wings.
White and brown stripes are further visible across the wings.
Black and white dots are also seen on the green ventral side of its wings.
As the name of the species suggests, this is a butterfly found at higher altitudes, almost everywhere around the US.
Juniper Hairstreak lays eggs in juniper but adult butterflies of the species feed on the nectar of plants such as dogbane and winter cress.
2. Lyside Sulphur
Lyside Sulphurs (Kricogonia lyside) are some of the smallest green butterflies in the US. This species has green-colored ventral wings.
The nuance of its ventral wings is light green with a darker margin on the upper forewings.
Its dorsal wings are typically pale yellow to yellow.
You can find this type of green butterfly in areas of Southern Texas and Southern Florida.
It’s here that it gets the most warmth it requires alongside some of the rare species of plants its caterpillars feed on.
Lyside Sulphur caterpillars are the only caterpillars on plants such as tribulus and lignum-vitae.
Malachite butterflies (Siproeta stelenes) have black and green dorsal coloring. This species has black and green forewings and hindwings.
Black veins and black margins are specific to the species while other sections across the wings are mostly green.
The body of the Malachite butterfly is black.
This species has brown and green coloring across its hindwings.
Malachite butterflies are among the few species that feed on dead animals and dung. Bat dung is often consumed by the species.
Rotting fruit is also one of the most unusual types of food this butterfly eats.
Petunias are the host flowers of the Malachite caterpillar.
4. Hawaiian Blue
Hawaiian Blues (Udara blackburni) are some of the most common species in Hawaii. This butterfly has blue dorsal wings and green ventral wings.
The green color of its ventral wings is dark with brown edges. This makes the Hawaiian Blue resemble a leaf.
Butterflies in this family are among the species that are mostly seen across acacia wood leaves.
With a wingspan of just over 1 inch, the Hawaiian Blue is also one of the smallest common butterflies in Hawaii.
This species has almost no presence anywhere else in the United States.
5. Yellow Angled-Sulphur
Yellow Angled-Sulphur butterflies (Anteos maerula) are medium-sized species with a wingspan of at least 3 inches that are also green.
This species only has green ventral wings coloring. Its ventral wings also show small brown spots that mimic eyespots.
Only found across Southern US, this species is known for being present in Texas, Arizona, and Florida.
Butterflies of this species are only interested in eating nectar from flowers and laying eggs on flowers.
Adults feed on hibiscus flowers while the Yellow Angled-Sulphur caterpillar grows on cassia flowers.
The Yellow Angled-Sulphur is also a migrant butterfly species moving to warmer climates in the South where these flowers are in season.
6. Pink-spot Sulphur
Pink-spotted Sulphur butterflies (Aphrissa neleis) are among the most common green species in Southern Florida.
This is the only area of the US the butterfly is found in.
This type of butterfly has green ventral wings with dark green veins which make it resemble leaves.
Its camouflaging green color helps it avoid predation.
With a wingspan of at least 2 inches, Pink-spot Sulphur is among the most common species that feed on red flowers in Southern Peninsular Florida.
Firebrush is among its favorite plants which means this type of butterfly is either found in openings or edges of woodlands.
The Pink-Spot Sulphur is also one of the most common species in urban areas.
7. Tropical Greenstreak
Tropical Greenstreak butterflies (Cyanophrys herodotus) are partially native to Southern Texas. These butterflies mostly live in tropical areas around the world, in Mexico, and other regions of Central and Southern America.
They have a green ventral wing color with blue dorsal wing coloring.
The green nuance of the butterfly can be either dark or light.
You can find these types of butterflies in open areas where lantana flowers grow. Elsewhere, these species have a considerably wide diet and they are also seen on mango trees.
The wingspan of the species measures around 25mm on average for its Texas population.
8. Clench’s Greenstreak
Clench’s Greenstreak butterflies (Cyanophrys miserabilis) are among the multiple species of green butterflies only found in Southern Texas.
You can only find this species traveling South from San Antonio and closer to McAllen.
More populous regions for Clench’s Greenstreak butterflies include areas of Costa Rica and Mexico.
This species has a wingspan of at least 1 inch and camouflaging green ventral wings.
Brown veins and margins are seen across its wings. The body of the butterfly is also green.
Known for short migrations, this specie solely feeds on pea family plants as a caterpillar.
Its diet adapts to nectar from other flowers as an adult.
9. Paris Peacock Swallowtail
Paris Peacock Swallowtail butterflies (Papilio paris) are among the most common species in Asia.
Native in Thailand and neighboring countries, Paris Peacock Swallowtail butterflies are among the species with green coloring on the dorsal wings.
The butterflies have a base black color with many tiny green dots all across the forewings and the hindwings.
The species also has a green body.
Bright green lines are further visible on the lower part of its hindwings running from the outer wings to the lower section of the body.
Pink and black eyespots are seen on the lower part of its hindwings.
These eyespots can also appear orange in some morphs of the species.
10. White Angled-Sulphur
The White Angled-Sulphur (Anteos clorinde) is a common green butterfly found across Southern and Central US states,
This species is also seen across Mexico and Cuba.
A dark green color is specific to the butterfly. Light green veins further decorate the ventral green color of the White Angled-Sulphur.
This butterfly species is seen across multiple types of host flowers in the Southern US. Cassia-genus flowers are among the most common host for the White Angled-Sulphur caterpillar.
The adult feeds on lantana and hibiscus flowers.
Almost all other colorful flowers growing in direct sunlight can attract these butterflies for nectar.
11. Tailed Jay
Tailed Jay butterflies (Graphium agamemnon) are native to Southeast Asia and Australia.
This species has colorful wings and a medium to large size.
Large green spots are seen across the black wings of the species. The green spots closer to the body are larger while those further toward the margins of the wings are tiny.
Its body is mostly black with silver lines and orange to yellow lines on the head.
Green spots are also seen on the ventral side of the wings.
This site is mostly light brown with red, black, and green spots and marks. The ventral color of its body is also brown.
12. Gaudy Baron
This colorful butterfly (Euthalia lubentina) is common in Southeast Asia. It has multicolored wings and it can be one of the most colorful species with green coloring.
Brown is the base color of the wings. Both light brown and dark brown are seen across its wings.
Black is seen on the veins and the margins of the butterfly.
Large white spots further decorate its upper wings. These white marks have black edges.
Red spots are seen on the upper side of its forewings as well as on its lower hindwings.
Gradient green to yellow coloring is only seen across its hindwings. This green color isn’t visible if the butterfly isn’t flying.
13. Sheridan’s Hairstreak
Sheridan’s Hairstreak butterflies (Callophrys sheridanii) are native to Western parts of North America.
This butterfly has vivid green ventral wings coloring. The green color of its ventral wings is considerably darker than the light green specific to Sheridan’s Hairstreak caterpillar.
This type of butterfly has gray-to-black veins and margins across the wings. Its margins are also doubled by wide black borders.
The green nuance of this butterfly is also characterized by a metallic hue mostly visible in direct sunlight.
Its antennae are a combination of black and white bands.
You can see this type of butterfly across dry habitats around local buckwheat.
14. Goodson’s Greenstreak
This species of butterfly (Cyanophrys goodsoni) is common in Central America and Texas.
It has white dorsal wings and green ventral wings with red to brown veins and margins.
Brown spots are also distinguished across the outer edges of its wings.
Goodson’s Greenstreak butterflies have a very long flight season in Texas.
The first butterflies of the species appear in May and they continue flying to December.
The species has an even longer season in Mexico. It appears in February in Central America.
Adult Goodson’s Greenstreak butterflies are seen feeding on flower nectar in forests or around forests.
15. Macleay’s Swallowtail
Native to Eastern Australia, Macleay’s Swallowtail (Graphium macleayanus) are some of the largest green butterflies in the world.
This species has green coloring both across its dorsal and its ventral wings.
Black and green are the main colors of its wings. The green coloring is seen across its forewings and partially as dots on the black sections across its hindwings and the black margins on the forewings.
This species has a white border that separates the green and the white areas on the wings.
Macleay’s Swallowtail butterflies also have green coloring on the hindwings. Black and brown are complementary colors on its ventral side.
The body of the species is green dorsally and yellow to white on the ventral side.
16. Christina Sulphur
Christian Sulphur butterflies (Colias christina) are native to the Northern parts of the US. This species represents one of the green-dominant butterflies both on the ventral and dorsal sides.
A light green color is specific to the wings, mainly close to the body. The dark green coloring is further seen on the wings towards the margins.
Red to brown margins are seen all around the wings.
This butterfly species also has black to red marks on the ventral side of the wings and around the body close to the legs.
Its legs are green while its antennae are red.
Christina Sulphur butterflies are some of the largest green species in North America. Their expected wingspan surpasses 50mm.
17. Cleopatra Butterfly
Cleopatra Butterflies (Gonepteryx cleopatra) are some of the largest green butterflies in Europe. The species has a long wingspan between 50 and 70mm.
These types of butterflies have green and yellow coloring on the dorsal wings and green coloring on the ventral wings.
Butterflies of this family are further known for having green coloring around the yellow spots on the forewings while the hindwings are dominantly-green.
This species has a light green color on the dorsal wings with a slightly darker nuance of green on the ventral wings.
Its closed wings show a species that mimics leaves in its coloring.
Today, this butterfly is found in the Southern coastal parts of Europe.
18. Sandia Hairstreak
Sandia Hairstreak butterflies (Callophrys mcfarlandi) are only seen on the Mexican border of the US. It’s found in Texas and Arizona.
This colorful butterfly species has a base green color, orange coloring, white coloring, and black coloring.
Light green is the main color of the butterfly. It has wide green sections across the wings which show black spots or black overlays.
Light brown areas are specific to the dorsal forewings and the ventral forewings.
This butterfly has black stripes with white borders across the margins of the wings.
Black half-moon marks are also seen towards the outer edges of the wings.
The body of the butterfly is gray with white ventral coloring whiles its antennae are black and white.
19. Rainbow Skipper
Rainbow Skippers (Phocides urania) are native to North and Central America.
This species has black and green coloring in highly decorated wing patterns.
Black is the main color of its wings with various pattern intersections. All areas between the black patterns are green.
This species has dark green nuances which are further visible across its hairy body.
The body of the Rainbow Skipper is mostly dark green on the upper side where it also shows gray to green hairs.
Alternating hairless black and green bands are seen on the lower parts of its body.
This butterfly also comes in a few different morphs that show 2 to 3 colored bands across each forewing. These bands are orange, pink, or gray.
20. Chinese Peacock Swallowtail
This type of large green butterfly (Papilio bianor) is native to China, India, and other countries in Southeast Asia.
With a wingspan that can reach over 70mm, this swallowtail is among the largest green butterflies in the world.
It has a base green color with tiny black dots and wide black veins.
The margins of its wings are also black.
Butterflies of this genus have either blue or orange with yellow spots on the lower side of the hindwings closer to the body, similar to other swallowtails.
This species also features 2 long tails that are also mostly green with black margins.
Constable butterflies (Dichorragia nesimachus) are a common species in Asia. Vietnam is a country where these butterflies are seen in high numbers, as is India.
You can identify this species by its multiple green and blue nuances.
It has light and dark green sections between the black veins. Each section shows black and white alternating spots on the hindwings and only white spots on the forewings.
This species has black margins with white patterns.
The body of the butterfly is dark gray to black. Only its head has a separate dark green color.
22. Glassy Bluebottle
Glassy Bluebottle (Graphium cloanthus) is a neo-tropical species.
It has a green base color with wide black sections across its wings.
Both the ventral and the dorsal colors of the species have a light green nuance.
This butterfly has greener areas further towards the margins of the wings and green to blue areas towards its body.
Wide black margins are seen both on the dorsal and the ventral side of the species.
Long black tails and green patches are seen across the lower part of its hindwings.
The species gets its name from the glossy green appearance of its hindwings.
23. Coastal Green Hairstreak
Coastal Green Hairstreak butterflies (Callophrys viridis) are highly common across California. This species lives on the coast and it travels inland for buckwheat.
You can identify a similar look on Coastal Green Hairstreaks as on other green hairstreak butterflies.
A base pale green color with tan or light brown secondary colors is visible on the species.
This butterfly has wide green areas across its ventral wings.
Its dorsal coloring is a combination of green and brown. Its hindwings show more brown coloring.
The margins of its wings are brown with white hairs.
24. Western Green Hairstreak
Western Green Hairstreak butterflies (Callophrys affinis) are among the few green butterflies of Western North America.
This butterfly has a base green color with brown overlays and contrasting brown and white margins.
The species is also known for having tiny brown spots all across the wings.
The body of the species has pale green dorsal coloring and gray ventral coloring. Its antennae are black and white with long black tips.
25. Common Nawab
Common Nawab (Polyura athamas) is native to countries such as Sri Lanka and Cambodia.
This butterfly species mimics a leaf with its coloring. It has mostly brown and light brown colors across its wings.
Its hindwings show the most amount of brown. However, the central spots of the wings are green.
This is believed to be a form of mimicry of a dying leaf.
Common Nawab butterflies maintain a green color as adults from a caterpillar stage.
This species is also known for being one of the largest green butterflies comparable to swallowtails. It can reach a wingspan of up to 85mm.
26. Green Flash
Green Flash butterflies (Artipe eryx) are another common species of Asia. You can find it as a native species in China.
Its dorsal wings have blue, purple, and black colors in the case of the male Green Flash and black and white coloring in the case of the females.
Both males and females of the species have green ventral wings. The entire ventral surface of the wings is green.
27. Lotus Hairstreak
This species (Callophrys dumetorum) is also known as the Oregon Hairstreak. It represents one of the main green hairstreak species native to the US.
It has a wingspan that ranges from 22 to 35mm. Green and brown coloring is specific to its wings.
The ventral color of the wings is also green as the Lotus Hairstreak mimics a leaf.
This type of butterfly isn’t easy to spot due to its short flight season that lasts until June.
28. Blue Duke
Blue Duke butterflies (Bassarona durga) are native to Southeast Asia. These colorful butterflies have a combination of blue and green coloring across the dorsal and ventral wings.
Green sections of the wings are specific to their inner part, close to the gray to the brown body.
Blue sections are seen on the outer wings together with a wide black border.
This species is also known for having visible black veins and large white spots that further decorate its wings.
The species is very active in the summer around The Himalayas.