Carpenter Bees

Carpenter Bees are from the Xylocopinae family; they are relatives of the bumblebee but their abdomen is black, shiny and hairless. Carpenter bees are fairly large measuring ½ inch to 1 inch in size. They do not nest in colonies like their bumblebee counterpart. Carpenter bees weather the winter alone and for those that survive the season; they emerge next Spring to mate. Female Carpenter bees drill holes into wood and create a tunnel to lay their eggs. Carpenter Bees are so named due to their habit of nesting in wood or wooded sites such as decks, outdoor furniture and practically anything made from weathered (old) wood. To prevent an infestation, it is recommended that unfinished wood or wooden items should be varnished or painted. Carpenter bees are discouraged from boring into wood if it is painted. If it is noticed that holes have been bored and nesting has begun then traps can be installed. Infested wood can also be replaced with treated wood or be treated with insecticides and sealed with putty or carpenter’s glue. If all attempts at preventing or treating Carpenter bees fail, it is best to contact a professional exterminator. DO NOT attempt to physically remove Carpenter bees; males are not able to sting; they will hover in front of you and try to create a distraction but female Carpenter bees will attack when provoked.