Appearance and Size Facts
- Carpenter bees generally resemble Bumble bees in size and color
- Black with some yellow
- Most Carpenter bees have yellow hairs on their thorax
- Abdomens are all black and shiny with few hairs
- There are two small species and two large species found in South Florida
- Only females have the ability to sting, although males will feign stinging
- Size: Approximately 1-inch long
Behavior and Habitat
Carpenter bees rarely attack painted or varnished wood, while natural wood may be attractive. These bees often cause problems for structures by boring into the surface of the wood that is the back face of the trim under the eaves. A buzzing or drilling sound is heard when the bee is boring into the wood. If the hole is not visible, the bee is boring into the backside of the trim, and sawdust can be seen underneath that area. The hole created by the bee is about the size of a dime, and looks as if someone used a perfectly round drill bit to open the wood. Carpenter bees are solitary bees that build nests in structural wood, bamboo, and dead trees. Galleries are made by the female who chews into the wood and hollowing out a chamber. The female then deposits a mass of pollen and nectar in the chamber and lays an egg there. She then plugs the chamber with chewed wood pulp and continues excavating until she has laid six to eight eggs. Nest galleries are reused for generations.
Signs of Infestation
Look for round smooth holes on wood and sawdust and wood shavings on the ground.
Tips for Prevention
Carpenter bees prefer bare wood, so painting and staining wood can sometimes help deter them.
Carpenter Bee Gallery
We know that weather and seasonal changes affect human behavior and outside activities, so it’s no big surprise that heat and cold, along with dry and wet conditions also affect pest populations. While seasonal changes can be subtle in the South Florida; these changes can send pests looking...Read More ›
Even though many bugs are active year-round in South Florida's mild, humid climate, but in the summer months…it's full-on bug time. The usual suspects, such as cockroaches, palmetto bugs, ants, termites, mosquitoes, bees, wasps, and spiders just love trying to ruin your summer plans. While you...Read More ›
May 29, 2019—Pest Control
Why do pests love to call Florida home? The short answer: What's not to like? Here are 7 reasons why pests love Florida. #1: Warmth Insects love warm weather. In cooler climates, insects tend to die off or go into hibernation. Florida's moderate temps allow pest colonies to grow larger...Read More ›