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Tips & info on maintaining and enjoying your Connecticut home
August 2010
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Spotlight On
Carpenter Bee Control

Spotlight On Carpenter Bees

Carpenter bees are prevalent throughout the United States. Although there are different species, the most common is big and resembles a bumble bee. This bee is unique from most because it will bore into wood to make its home. They are a nuisance and can cause damage to any wood on your property.

Carpenter bees bore 1/2" holes into wood decks, siding, posts, railings, trim and trees. This hole will go straight an inch or two and then turn 90 degrees. This new portion of the nest becomes an egg chamber. Typically the female carpenter bee will stand guard at the nest entry hole. She will defend the nest aggressively and she is armed with a stinger.

To get rid of carpenter bees, you must think long term. You must treat the nest with some material which will last a long period of time so it will effectively stop the larva. Spraying liquid residuals in the hole might kill the female, but will not kill the eggs, and 6-12 months later the larva will emerge. Insecticides will also kill good bees like honey bees and bumble bees.

To insure nest control use a dust insecticide that has a desiccant (dehydrating) action, and when the larvas emerge they will be killed quickly. If a non-chemical approach is preferred, plugging the entrances with caulk or putty is highly effective. Carpenter bees will not be able to get out of the nest if they are trapped inside resulting in their eventual death. Simply caulking or puttying the entrances and then painting over them will save money, time and the environment.

Bumble Bee (left) and Carpenter Bee (right). Photo Credit:

Carpenter Bee Facts

Only the female carpenter bee has a stinger.

Carpenter bees are very similar in appearance to Bumble bees. Bumble bees have yellow hairy abdomens, while a carpenter bee abdomen is shiny and black.

Carpenter bees prefer weathered or old wood to nest in. Painted wood (not stained) MAY deter them, but they have been known to nest in painted wood as well.

Carpenter bee nests always have a perfectly round opening.

Carpenter bees will return to their nest of origin season after season.

More Info:

Get Rid of Carpenter Bees, Naturally

Carpenter Bee Control

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Some nice green grass

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Spotlight On
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Spotlight On Carpenter Bees

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