The name carpenter bee came from their ability to chew through wood to make holes and tunnels. These particular bees can look a lot like a regular bumble bee, but they have a shiny black body that has white, orange, or yellow hairs on the thorax or upper body part between the head and the abdomen. The male carpenter bees have white markings on their heads, and the females have heads that are all black. Both the males and females can grow to be around 1 inch in length. Carpenter bees are pretty peaceful, solitary insects, unlike other stinging insects that are social and collectively aggressive.
But, are these carpenter bees dangerous? Yes! And here are some reasons why:
- The female carpenter bees do not aggressively attack, but they can sting people and pets if they are provoked, especially if they feel their nesting galleries are in danger. The sting from a female carpenter bee can be painful and cause a red swollen welt that may hurt for a few days. For individuals that are allergic to bee venom, the sting can be serious and, in some cases, life threatening. The male carpenter bees are incapable of stinging but can buzz around annoyingly.
The female carpenter bees are also the ones that will chew holes in wooden items while they search for a place to nest and lay eggs. These amazing carpenters can bore holes deep into wood causing damage to the exterior of homes, wooden play sets, outbuildings, decks, eaves, and other wood structures, leaving behind sawdust or “frass”. Inside the wood, the females lay their eggs where they can remain protected as the larvae grow. The male carpenter bees will buzz around guarding the nesting area from the outside, causing an annoyance to anyone that approaches.
In the event that you have a carpenter bee infestation, you should call on a pest management professional to identify the infestation, evaluate nesting locations and conditions, and design a plan to treat the infestation properly and efficiently. Here at Witt Pest Management, we can do just that. We have highly skilled professionals that can evaluate your stinging insect problems and come up with a specific and effective solution. Do not attempt to remove a nest or try to eradicate carpenter bees on your own. It is a dangerous task that requires professional action. Give us a call today at Witt Pest Management in the greater Pittsburgh area, we are “The smart way to be pest free.”