This volume is the fourth about the Pieridae family, and deals, in part, with the subfamily Pierinae, covering the tribe Anthocharidini, one of the nicest looking butterfly groups encompassing a variety of spring species showing a delicate mix of yellow, white, green and d orange colours. Anthocharidini are widespread in the Palearctic and Nearctic regions, are individually and geographically very variable and have diversified in many species whose systematic position is often puzzling. Not surprising, therefore, is the interest that they have always aroused among lepidopterists. Worthy of mention from the first half of the last century are Williams, Klots, Bernardi and Verity.
After them, from the seventies to today, Werner Back, the author of this book, has carried on intensive research, eagerly putting together a huge amount of data about the morphology, the early stages, the habitat, the distribution, the geographical variations and later also the genetics of Anthocharidini and assembling one of the largest specimen collections in the world.
His works have received mixed reactions in the lepidopterist community: there has always been a strong interest in the brilliant results achieved solving complex systematic problems, but in some cases also a bit of perplexity due to the supporting data often considered to be too concise, to his being overconfident in the value of the results of genetic analysis based on mitochondrial DNA sequences, and also to his attitude to splitting sometimes looking not properly justified.
Regardless, the value of Werner's research and results is unquestionable and no new revision or new systematic arrangement of the Anthocharidini will be possible without taking into account his works. Therefore, this book will be a useful starting point for any future research on the subject, even if the systematics here proposed may in some cases look questionable.