Insect Removal: Are Carpenter Bees Turning Your Home Into a Hive?

When the weather gets warm in St. Louis, insect exterminators see an uptick in the number of insect removal operations for carpenter bees — a subfamily of bees that naturally burrow into dead wood, bamboo, and structural wood to build their expansive hives. Unlike many types of insects that infest homes, carpenter bees can do more than shatter the homeowner’s peace of mind. They can also damage the residence to the extent that its real estate value plummets.

Bees Inside the Home
In terms of where they strike inside the home, carpenter bees are similar to termites; you usually find them inside wood. However, unlike termites, the bees seldom devour a piece of wood until it becomes soft, as this would compromise the safety of the hive. Instead, they turn a piece of wood into something whose cross section resembles the inside of a block of swiss cheese.

At the end of the winding tunnels the bees burrow is found in their hive. Because the hive is well-protected by being located deep inside wood that has a solid surface area, you would a have hard time eliminating the insects using over-the-counter insect removal solutions, particularly stinging insect spray. Because the tunnels they build seldom lead to the hive along a straight line, it’s almost impossible to hit the colony using a can of aerosol exterminating solution.

In fact, trying to address a carpenter bee problem with store-bought sprays can eventually cost more than hiring a professional exterminator. All the while, the hive will be expanding, with new tunnels being burrowed to provide better access. Considering the significant structural damage that carpenter bees can do to a home over time, having a professional exterminator address the problem as soon as possible is essential for preventing damage that could cost thousands to fix.

Bees Outside the Home
Unlike some types of insects that commonly infest homes, carpenter bees aren’t primarily disposed to living indoors. They will also infest wood that surrounds a residence if they detect that the material would support a thriving hive. Even when this is the case, and the property in question doesn’t have bees inside the residence, it is still important to exterminate the insects.

While there is no guarantee that bees living outside the residence will eventually move inside it, this situation is actually quite common, as the insects gradually look for new places to colonize.

Therefore, the best way to prevent property damage from carpenter bees is to exterminate them before they get the chance to enter pieces of wood that are located on the home’s exterior, or slip through small points of entry (e.g., attic vents) to gain access to wall joists and sub flooring.

Have a Carpenter Bee Problem?
Carpenter bees look strikingly similar to bumblebees. Consequently, many homeowners fail to notice the presence of the insects until significant damage has been done to the residence or its surrounding structures. This why it’s a good idea to have your home inspected for carpenter bee colonies at least twice a year. Because the insects tend to be quiet and unaggressive as they burrow tunnels through wood to create new hives, taking the proactive approach works best.

Whether you suspect that your home has a carpenter bee infestation, or you know for certain that an infestation is present, let Holper’s Pest & Animal Solutions perform a free inspection of the residence and its surrounding property. If we find that carpenter bees are at work, we will propose a solution for eliminating them as expediently and economically as possible.

To help prevent carpenter bees from turning your home into a hive, call us today at (314) 732-1413, or email us at, to schedule a free inspection. We look forward to helping you keep your home safe from a common, summertime pest: carpenter bees.