Alfalfa or Little Yellow

(Eurema lisa)


The upperside of Alfalfa male has a yellow forewing with a wide black apex. The hindwing has a black border. The female Alfalfa  has a yellow or white (rare) wing with a black border. Both sexes have a small black spot in the forewing cell. The typical butterfly wingspan is 1 1/4 to 1 3/4 inches (3.2

The caterpillar is bright grass green with one or two white lines along each side.


The Alfalfa butterfly prefers dry and open areas including roadsides, sandy fields, abandoned fields and occasionally open woods.


The caterpillar eats Partridge Pea and Wild Sensitive plant in the pea family (Fabaceae). The butterfly feeds on nectar from flowers in the aster family (Asteraceae) including goldenrods and asters.

Life Cycle

The males patrol for females during warm daylight hours. Females lay eggs singly on midveins or between leaflets of host plant leaves.


Regular migrant to Bermuda. To attract the Alfalfa Butterfly plant Wild Sensitive plant, Goldenrod and Asters.