The Truth About Carpenter Bees
Last Updated on March 18, 2021 by Bees N Things
The name “carpenter bees” comes from the activities carried out by the busy insects. The fat bees are known for burrowing holes in wood and often seek refuge in the roofs of homes. Their outward appearance is very similar to bumblebees, except that they are slightly bigger. Most people fail to deal with bumble bees since they are unable to identify them in the first place.
Besides their outward appearance, carpenter bees can be identified by their activities. The male bees are oddly aggressive and may respond violently when disturbed. However, carpenter bees do not sting. They love staying in flower gardens since they feast on pollen grains. The main clues that can be used in identifying carpenter bees are their residence and their appearances.
Read on to get the full facts about carpenter bees and find out how they can be identified.
Do Carpenter Bees Sting or Bite You?
Carpenter bees don’t seem to do much to make themselves more popular. They create their nests in the wood of porches and homes, which has given them their name. The males also show an odd amount of aggression, given that they are incapable of stinging anyone. Bees are well-known for their ability to produce honey, but what about carpenter bees? Do they have a potential use as honey creators.
Carpenter bees get their name from their habit of tunneling into wood to create their homes. These solitary bees tunnel into wood, especially in lumber that has not been well-kept over the years. Over time, the wood grows weaker as more carpenter bees are born. Carpenter bees can often be found nesting in decks and homes; virtually anywhere that they can find wood to burrow into.
Carpenter bees look very much like bumblebees, so it is common to confuse one for the other. Look at the upper side of the bee’s abdomen to see the key difference in these bees. Where bumblebee abdomens are covered in small hairs, the top of a carpenter bee’s midsection will be have no hair, and thus will be more shiny.
Male carpenter bees can be found flying back and forth near nest entrances, chasing away anyone that would come near the home. They cannot sting, due to their lack of a stinger, so there is no true danger from the males. The females can sting somebody multiple times, but only tend to do so when they are provoked. As long as they are left alone, the only real danger that carpenter bees pose is to the wood of a home.
Like the traditional honey bee, carpenter bees eat a mixture of pollen and nectar. Female bees then give their larvae food in the form of a ball of pollen mixed with reused nectar that has been used to line the home. This is where honey comes into play.
The mixture that carpenter bee females feed their larvae is a kind of honey, but not in the traditional sense. This honey is much thinner and more watery than that produced by the honey bee, and is only a viable food source for carpenter bee larvae. This unfortunately means that there is no feasible way to harvest carpenter bee honey. With this in mind, the only logical step is to remove the bees before they can do serious damage.
Initially, carpenter bees are virtually harmless. The males may be annoying, but the females tend to keep to themselves without posing much real threat for those without a serious bee allergy. Overtime, however, they become far less innocuous.
While they are largely solitary bees, their numbers will consistently grow as they get more comfortable and go unchallenged in a location. This can lead to the wood that they are nesting in going from having a handful of holes in it to being completely destroyed. While it is rare for carpenter bees to do structural damage to a home or porch, the destruction of the wood is at the very least a serious nuisance. After all, who wants to deal with the headache of destroyed wood when carpenter bee traps are so readily available?
BeesNThings offers carpenter bee traps that will lure the bees in without the need to check and replace bait. They provide a simple way to be rid of carpenter bees without worrying about them becoming an infestation in the home. With BeesNThings, there is no reason to suffer from carpenter bees infiltrating your space.