carpenter-bee-removal

Are Carpenter Bees Turning Your Home in to Swiss Cheese?

When we think of bees, we usually envision honey bees pollinating flowers and nesting in natural sites, such as tree cavities, or inhabiting hives made expressly for bee colonies. However, for homeowners, not all bees lead such a charmed existence. Carpenter bees (a.k.a. wood bores) often destroy structural wood to create nests instead of searching for existing sites that are perfect colonize — and the insects don’t offer the silver lining of making honey.

How Carpenter Bees are Detected

Carpenter bees are separated into two genera: Xylocopa, which are large carpenter bees that look similar to bumblebees, but lack visible hairs on the abdomen that are present in the latter; and Ceratina, which are considerably smaller (less than 8 mm long), and have a relatively hairless, glossy exoskeleton that ranges in color from black, to greenish black, to metallic blue, to purplish blue. So, one of the ways carpenter bees are detected is by appearance alone.

bee-controlHowever, because carpenter bees spend lots of time in their colonies, they can be difficult for homeowners to see. But one thing about carpenter bees that’s easy to see is the holes they bore in wood. The holes often appear perfectly round and may be surrounded by an accretion of pollen and bee excrement, but severe damage just under the wood surface can eventually cause segments of the tunnels to become visible on the exterior. Common sites on a home where carpenter bee holes appear include:

  • Doors
  • Window Sills
  • Roof eaves
  • Railings
  • Decks

A third way carpenter bees are detected is through the appearance of wood dust just below holes the bees use to enter the nest. An experienced provider of carpenter bee removal will look for all three of these signs to determine whether the bees are present and, if they are, the extent of the infestation. If your home is infested, a good exterminator acts quickly to minimize structural damage and keep the wood of the residence from becoming proverbial swiss cheese.

How Carpenter Bees are Removed

Carpenter bee removal is generally performed by applying a powder-based or aqueous-based insecticide to holes that lead to the nest. As the bees enter and leave the hive, they contact the insecticide and die shortly thereafter. So, the actual extermination process is rather simple when the right insecticide is used.

However, after the bees are dead, a thorough exterminator recommends patching the holes to prevent opportunistic reinfestation. The exterminator may also recommend painting exterior wood surfaces with exterior paint or a polyurethane finish, which are unpalatable to the insects. Once the bees are gone and these measures are taken, your residence is highly secure against carpenter bees.

Need Carpenter Bee Removal?

If you suspect carpenter bees are repurposing your home as a hive, having the problem addressed quickly is crucial for preventing structural and aesthetic damage. If you notice signs of carpenter bees around your residence, call Holper’s Pest & Animal Solutions today at (314) 732-1413, or email us at info@holperspest.com, to schedule a free inspection. If bees are present, we’ll perform carpenter bee removal quickly and comprehensively.