Carpenter bees emerge from hibernation in the spring. They get their common name from their habit of boring into wood to make galleries for rearing their young. Carpenter bees resemble bumblebees but their abdomen is largely bare and shiny.
Carpenter bees are not social insects and do not live in nests or colonies. The adults hibernate through the winter, typically in abandoned nest tunnels. In the spring, they emerge and feed on nectar. To excavate galleries, female carpenter bees bore circular holes the same diameter as their bodies straight into wood, and then turn to tunnel along the grain of the wood.
Carpenter bees are not serious property threat, but can cause damage over time if left untreated. They prefer bare, weathered and unpainted wood and will chew a tunnel into a piece of wood to build a nest gallery. Tunnel openings usually appear about one or two inches deep, but they can be up to 10 feet long. Routinely inspect wood on your property for signs of a carpenter bee infestation, including round, smooth holes.
Male carpenter bees can be territorial and may hover in front of one’s face aggressively, but they do not sting, these actions are merely for show. Female carpenter bees do have a potent sting, but it is rarely used. The stingers are not barbed, so the female can sting over and over again.
If you suspect a carpenter bee infestation, contact us immediately at 302.792.9300.