Carpenter bee control is a three-fold process: prevention, identification, and treatment. Carpenter bees are large black and yellow bees that resemble harmless bumblebees. Carpenter bees rarely pose a problem for humans, other than the damage they can cause in wood structures. Male carpenter bees may hover near people and fly at them if they come close to the nest site, but they don’t have the ability to sting. Female carpenter bees do have the ability to sting, but they very rarely do so unless seriously provoked or threatened. The most common problems associated with carpenter bees is structural damage, as not only do they drill holes in wood, but they also cause stains on buildings by defecating on the walls below their nest.
Carpenter bees generally look very similar to bumblebees, but they can be distinguished by the fact that the abdomen of the carpenter bee is usually entirely black and hairless. The difference in a bumble bee verses a carpenter bee is that the carpenter bee will burrow through wood, using strong jaws, to create a nest inside your home. The damage caused may seem minimal at first, but over time a series of tunnels will severely weaken your structure.
Carpenter bees build their nests in areas that contain wood, such as in trees or in frame buildings. The activity of several generations of carpenter bees can cause significant damage to a structure. During the winter, young adult males and females hibernate in the tunnels they previously constructed. Mating occurs in the spring, which is followed by the further renovation of the bees’ nest to prepare for the coming young.
Don’t be fooled into thinking your home is safe just because it has been stained or painted. Carpenter bee control is definitely helped by treating wood, but that is still no guarantee the wood won’t get attacked. Still, it’s the right first step and you should take care that your wood is properly treated, and re-treated when necessary. You will want to treat in the early spring and on a yearly bases. The process is simple and all you need for application is a pump-up type sprayer.
If you identify carpenter bee holes—typically round, and a half-inch in diameter—treat the entrance with an insecticide spray or dust. At Men-Wood Coatings we are proud to carry Tempo Dust and Demand CS, two of the best products on the market.
Carpenter bee control usually starts on the underside of the wood, particularly overhangs like decks and window frames. Holes might only look like they are a couple of inches deep and abandoned. But carpenter bees usually construct their tunnels with a series of right turns, so be careful.
Next, seal and caulk the tunnels. You don’t want your carpenter bees to return the next year and find an open network of tunnels ready for use.
We have successfully been helping customers with all phases of carpenter bee control for years, so give us a call at (800) 972-7693 or click here to go to our quick and easy contact form and we’ll get you started on the path to saving your home from carpenter bees.