Quick Facts
Size  Large, ½ ” –  1”
Color Mostly black with white or yellow face (males)
Body Shiny, hairless abdomen
Legs 6 with yellowish hairs
Antennae Yes
Stinger Females have a stinger, but males do not


  • Excavated tunnels in soft, untreated, or weathered wood
  • Enter into tunnels through round holes bored into the wood


  • They do not live in nests and colonies, instead, hibernate in nest tunnels in winter
  • Not really aggressive unless provoked
  • Males appear aggressive, but do not have stingers
  • Solitary, unlike other bees

Carpenter Bees Habitat

Carpenter Bees are attracted to soft, untreated, or weather wood and will excavate tunnel nests. They can nest in eaves, fascia, window trim, or any other wooden surface. They prefer the wood of cedar, pine, redwood, and cypress trees. Though they prefer untreated wood, they will occasionally target treated or painted wood. Even though they are boring into wood, Carpenter Bees do not eat the wood but feed on the nectar in flowering plants.

Carpenter Bees Habits

Unlike Bumblebees, Carpenter Bees are solitary and the females mate individually to produce offspring. After mating, the females work to expand the tunnels, or “galleries”, that were left by earlier generations or create new ones. During the spring and summer, Carpenter Bees collect pollen and leave it in the nest in order to survive over the winter.

Carpenter Bee Dangers or Threats

The galleries that Carpenter Bees create are for bringing up their offspring. These tunnels are usually 3/8” in diameter and up to 10” deep, depending on the thickness of the wood. If left alone, Carpenter Bees can cause significant damage to a structure as they will return to the same nests generation after generation and continue to expand. Other than potential structural damage, Carpenter Bees are not considered dangerous or aggressive.

What To Do If You Think You Have A Carpenter Bee Infestation

Carpenter Bee infestations are often easy to spot as they bore almost perfectly round, 3/8” holes into wood and use those holes to enter and exit the interior tunnels. If you are seeing holes in the wood on your house or other evidence of a Carpenter Bee infestation, contact The Bug Man and Queen Bee.

When you call, you will get an estimate over the phone and our friendly office staff will get you scheduled as soon as possible, sometimes the next day! Our experts will come out and do a full inspection and determine all the spots that Carpenter Bees are entering into your home and use a combination of techniques to eliminate the current issue. While we are able to take care of active Carpenter Bee nests, the best defense for preventing further infestations is closing up any holes and painting and sealing the exposed wood.

As a local and family-owned business, we take great pride in meeting and exceeding our Milwaukee-area customers’ expectations. For more information regarding our Carpenter Bee removal services, click here. Contact us today for your free estimate!