Carpenter Bees closely resemble bumblebees in size and appearance. Their backs are shiny black and hairless while bumblebees are hairy and usually have yellow marks on their backs. Carpenter Bees rarely sting.

Damage From Carpenter Bees

Carpenter Bees make round tunnels in wooden structures where they shelter and raise their young. They do not feed on the wood, but over time the tunnels can damage the integrity of the wood and structures it supports.  

Carpenter Bees can damage decks, posts, beams, siding, rafters -  any exposed wood. Carpenter Bees prefer unpainted wood.

Where Carpenter Bees are Found Geographically

Carpenter Bees can be found throughout the United States.


Cultural Controls

  • Paint wood surfaces frequently to maintain a seal and discourage tunneling.
  • Seal vacant holes with putty or caulk to keep Carpenter Bees from returning.
  • For additional methods of controlling Carpenter Bees, contact your local cooperative extension service.