A carpenter bee is similar to a bumble bee. Their main difference is that they don’t have the yellow and black stripe rear ends that bumble bees have. In fact, their rear ends are shiny.
A carpenter bee gets its name from their nesting behavior. They burrow into wood – dead wood, bamboo, and…. my porch ceilings (which are made of cedar).
At first I did not know what was happening. I had the most perfect round holes, about 1/2” diameter, in my porch ceilings and the railings of my deck. I then noticed a little pile of sawdust under the holes (they do not eat the wood). I asked my friends and hit the web.
Did you know that a carpenter bee can do massive damage inside your wood. They can totally weaken your structure. Those holes need to be treated. Or better yet, prevented. Now, keep in mind, that bees are pollinators and good for the environment so it isn’t a good idea to kill them – just frustrate their nesting/egg laying process and get them moving along.
Paint your house, deck or structure – they only like untreated wood. Painting will protect the wood from the bees.
Some of the methods above might have to be repeated for a few days.
And be very careful when around bees – Here is a great article so you don't get stung.
After you have killed all the bees seal up the holes. Plug carpenter bee holes with caulk the color of your structure.
We JUST had our cedar ceilings treated. The bees fly around and then fly away. Win win. I prefer the natural method of getting rid of carpenter bees.
I hope this has helped you in your quest for a better ‘bee free’ life. Your house will thank you. Check out my ‘Spring is Here – Get Your House Ready Post’ here. Our yards and house need a lot of love in springtime.
PS – Disclaimer – The bee in the photo is definitely not a carpenter bee. But, it is definitely a bee. haha