Are Carpenter Bees Dangerous?

carpenter bee on a purple flower

Do you have holes in the wood soffit of your house? Did you come home and find a woodpecker noisily trying to tunnel into your eave? The woodpecker is a sign that you may have carpenter bee larvae nested in wood on the side of your home. Maybe you are wondering what carpenter bees look like and if they are dangerous?

While carpenter bees look like a mostly black version of bumble bees that’s where their similarities end. They are quite different than bumblebees. Yes, they can sting, but only the female can. Their sting should be treated like any other bee sting. If you are allergic to bee stings, then you should seek immediate medical attention. Here’s the big difference of these pests though - they nest alone. They burrow in wood and lay eggs that hatch into larvae. The male carpenter bees buzz around the outside of the hole to protect the female while she is laying the eggs and situating the nest. Although he can’t sting, he can cause concern because of his buzzing around in an aggressive nature. This behavior is usually what causes people to ask us if carpenter bees are dangerous.

Here’s something pretty interesting about these wood-destroying insects - woodpeckers are attracted to the sound that the hatching larvae make, so they will boreholes in the wood to find them to eat. Most of the damage seen on the outside of homes is from the woodpeckers trying to get to the larvae, not the carpenter bees themselves!

Carpenter bees prefer unfinished wood. An easy deterrent is to keep all your wood stained or painted. Coating your wood will help but should not be the sole tool to manage these pests. If you are wondering how to get rid of carpenter bees on your property you should give your local Pittsburgh exterminators a call. Carpenter bees plus woodpeckers is a bad combo! Save yourself the headache and your home the damage and contact Witt upon the first sighting of this kind of pest activity! Witt’s Pittsburgh pest control team has a wealth of knowledge, experience, and advanced methods to effectively rid your property of nuisance pests like carpenter bees, ants, roaches and so much more!

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