Carpenter bees can cause considerable damage to your home.

May 13, 2020

As a homeowner, you may have seen the telltale signs of carpenter bees and not realized what you were looking at. Carpenter bees create perfectly round holes in your deck, railing, or wooden furniture.

What are carpenter bees?

Carpenter bees are large, shiny, black, and yellow bees. You will find them flying around the outside of your home in search of wood. These bees live up to their name. Female carpenter bees have strong sharp teeth. They drill and bore into wood in perfectly symmetrical and tubular holes. Here they will lay their eggs.

  • Carpenter bees love wood and prefer clean, untreated, and unpainted wood.
  • Carpenter bees do not eat the wood like termites. They just drill through the wood and you may find sawdust near the opening of the holes.
  • Females create these tubes or holes to lay their eggs.
  • Carpenter bees look like bumblebees, but their bellies are shiny and hairless.
  • Male carpenter bees do not have stingers; females do but do not use them unless threatened.

Can Carpenter bees cause long-term damage to my home?

According to Today’s Homeowner with Danny Lipford,

If your infestation is limited to a tunnel or two, there’s nothing to worry about. Even though they technically do bore into wood, carpenter bees don’t systematically destroy a structure like termites or carpenter ants. However, if the infestation is extensive or has been going on for years, the sheer number of tunnels can cause problems, including:

  • Structural Damage: It would take a lot of tunnels to compromise a structure, but over time they can weaken the wood.
  • Water Damage: If moisture enters the tunnels, it can speed the rotting of the wood. This is especially problematic if the tunnels are in your home’s siding since it protects the structure.
  • Stains: Feces of carpenter bees can stain wood.
  • Woodpeckers: Insect-eating birds can be drawn to the enticing sounds of bee nesting and larvae, which can invite much more severe damage.

Moral of the story: get treatment! If there are visible holes, it may be a sign that there are more access points in places you cannot easily see such as soffits and wood siding.

Carpenter bee in a hole.

Carpenter bee entering a drilled hole.

How do I get rid of carpenter bees?

The best thing to do when dealing with any type of bee is to contact a licensed pest control company. Bees are dangerous and can be eliminated safely by a highly skilled pest control technician.

Effective treatment begins with a thorough inspection of your home and property. If you attempt to treat or close the holes, the females can become trapped and will embark upon creating a new tunnel expanding the damage. More tunnels equate to weakened structures and long-term damage.

We will assess the situation and determine the best method for treatment. Our technicians are trained to identify all types of bees and treat them accordingly. We are mindful in targeting the areas where the bees are present and avoid harming the balance of nature that bees and their pollination efforts provide.

Read more about our pest control services here, and contact us if you see any bee activity in our around your home. Inspections are free and treating for bees on a regular basis keeps you and your family, home, or business safe and healthy.


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