David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
6/29/22 12:09 p.m.

I know, bees are good, but carpenter bees have tried to eat our house (and deck). 

Getting them with the spray takes a direct hit. And you have to be there waiting for them.

What about those traps? So I ordered one–this one from Best Bee Brothers. Figure, worst case, I was out like $20.

I also ordered their special goo said to attract carpenter bees. And, going all the way and actually following the instructions, I placed a carpenter bee carcass inside the trap. I guess they like to live in the shadow of their competitors or something like that.

I saw a bee hovering around our front porch this weekend and hung the trap Saturday evening.

Sunday morning, I found another bee in there. 

Ashyukun (Robert)
Ashyukun (Robert) PowerDork
6/29/22 12:45 p.m.

That's trap #1 of 4 around our house/property and the one that has been most successful this year- the A-holes (since they make Bee Holes...) love to try and nest in the large beams that driveway gate hinges off of. I've been waging an ever-escalating war against them for the last 5 years or so- this year I think I've caught, swatted out of the sky, or killed in holes with spray like 3 dozen of them- and yet there are still some that survive. 

Putting the bee carcass in the trap does help a lot- apparently they usually die in the holes that they've made and the next generation use the scent to locate pre-made holes for them to neste in. 

stukndapast
stukndapast Reader
6/29/22 12:47 p.m.

You're missing out on all the fun, exercise and hand/eye coordination practice!  Get a ping-pong, racketball or similar paddle and knock the little buggers out of the air, followed by a foot/ankle/knee exercise stomping on them on the ground.  They are amazing at hovering, and are usually interested in examining creatures such as us who get anywhere near their nests.  Thus, they are easy to knock down, and it's fun too!  If you hit them hard enough they just break into pieces.

I have found that the usual wasp spray doesn't seem to have much or any affect on them.  I have seen spray that specifically says it it for carpenter bees, but haven't tried it. 

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
6/29/22 1:31 p.m.

In reply to Ashyukun (Robert) :

I was amazed/impressed to catch a bee so quickly. 

cfvwtuner
cfvwtuner Reader
6/29/22 2:21 p.m.

We had a problem with them eating away at the back deck.  We bought a trap from Tractor Supply, and just put it  on a post near their favorite spot to chew.  That trap caught so many we almost couldnt empty it out fast enough.  It's been a couple of weeks and we havent seen any more bees

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
6/29/22 2:23 p.m.

In reply to cfvwtuner :

surprise

maschinenbau
maschinenbau UberDork
6/29/22 3:03 p.m.

Aw, I love those little guys. They're like tiny, clumsy, drunk, flying pandas.

Ashyukun (Robert)
Ashyukun (Robert) PowerDork
6/29/22 3:20 p.m.
maschinenbau said:

Aw, I love those little guys. They're like tiny, clumsy, drunk, flying pandas.

I wouldn't mind them if they didn't swiss-cheese my fencecposts and the boards around our porch.

GeddesB
GeddesB Reader
6/29/22 7:04 p.m.

Thank you!!!  Trap and bait inbound!!!

JoeTR6
JoeTR6 Dork
6/29/22 7:17 p.m.
stukndapast said:

You're missing out on all the fun, exercise and hand/eye coordination practice!  Get a ping-pong, racketball or similar paddle and knock the little buggers out of the air, followed by a foot/ankle/knee exercise stomping on them on the ground.  They are amazing at hovering, and are usually interested in examining creatures such as us who get anywhere near their nests.  Thus, they are easy to knock down, and it's fun too!  If you hit them hard enough they just break into pieces.

I have found that the usual wasp spray doesn't seem to have much or any affect on them.  I have seen spray that specifically says it it for carpenter bees, but haven't tried it. 

I used a badminton racket when I lived in Virginia.  Better reach, and there's nothing left to finish off if you score a solid hit with the strings.  But you are right, it's good exercise.

J.A. Ackley
J.A. Ackley Senior Editor
6/29/22 8:54 p.m.

I found the traps work, if ...

- They're placed near where they like to drill into. It doesn't have to be right next to it, but within six feet. Beyond that, they don't seem interested.

- After a while, these traps lose their appeal, for some reason. Maybe it's the smell of the dead carcasses (I clean them out) or it's because the wood ages, but they don't like older traps.

Overall, I found the traps are the best solution. Our carpenter bee population has dropped quite a bit. I only saw one or two this past spring.

SV reX
SV reX MegaDork
6/29/22 9:01 p.m.

They are fun to set on fire

SV reX
SV reX MegaDork
6/29/22 9:02 p.m.

I'm a carpenter. Of course I know the little buggers!

They show up in stuff I'm building sometimes before I'm even finished. 
 

Odd fact... the females have white faces. 

travellering
travellering HalfDork
6/29/22 9:02 p.m.

Netflix has a (sort of kids-focused) series starring everyone's favorite McLaren F1 crasher, Rowan Atkinson, called Man vs Bee.  Sounds like you could picture yourself as the title character...

edwardh80
edwardh80 Reader
6/30/22 2:14 a.m.

Little buggers love to drill all sorts of holes in my lovely beam and post patio in FL. I hate them.

If you want to kill them in the hole, diatomaceous earth works a treat. Blast it in the hole with a turkey baster, and they drop like flies. The DE powder erodes their external hard shell and they die right quick.

TJL (Forum Supporter)
TJL (Forum Supporter) Dork
6/30/22 7:41 a.m.

I have tons of them around but they seem to only pollinate my flowers n stuff. I dont catch them burrowing into my humble abode.  Seeing how much they pollinate, i have a hard time just wasting them. But they arent eating my house. I live on a good section of woods so maybe they are doing their tunneling in nature.

spitfirebill
spitfirebill MegaDork
6/30/22 11:59 a.m.
SV reX said:

Odd fact... the females have white faces. 

I do t know about that, but the males have a yellow dot on their face.  
 

It's the males that love to hover so much, looking for a little action.  Of course the males don't sting.  

Insecticide for me has been pretty futile.  I have used brake cleaner to knock them down, but you have to stomp them before they recover and fly off.  
 

The dead ones in the trap attract others because of pheromones.  
 

I've been fighting the little SObees for years because the bore in the joists under my storage building.  I finally put up wire and exclude them.  They don't seem to be interested in any other wood.  
 

I didn't stay in a Holiday Inn last night, but I am (was) an entomologist.  

jwagner (Forum Supporter)
jwagner (Forum Supporter) Reader
6/30/22 1:55 p.m.

Electronic Fly & Insect Swatter

Ashyukun (Robert)
Ashyukun (Robert) PowerDork
6/30/22 4:24 p.m.
TJL (Forum Supporter) said:

I have tons of them around but they seem to only pollinate my flowers n stuff. I dont catch them burrowing into my humble abode.  Seeing how much they pollinate, i have a hard time just wasting them. But they arent eating my house. I live on a good section of woods so maybe they are doing their tunneling in nature.

This is probably the case- if there is sufficient nature around for them to make their nests they don't bother processed wood. When we started building our cabin and the massive wood-frame platform it sits on was being build I put a few traps out there to protect it. I think in the 3 years since I've caught like 1 wood bee despite there being a LOT of wood there they should love to nest in- but the cabin itself sits in the middle of a dense woods, so I'm guessing they prefer making nests out in the woods.

PubBurgers
PubBurgers SuperDork
7/8/22 3:12 p.m.

After seeing this thread I picked up one of these are Wally world and can confirm it works great. Seeded it with a couple dead bees and it took off on it's own from there.

nlevine (Forum Supporter)
nlevine (Forum Supporter) Reader
7/8/22 10:19 p.m.

I had the double whammy of carpenter bees (which I had an exterminator treat), followed by woodpeckers pecking bigger holes in my fascia boards going after the bee larvae... A couple of thousand dollars in new wood later, and I think they're finally gone...

Stampie
Stampie MegaDork
7/8/22 10:30 p.m.

Man there's a lot of hate for nature happening here.  Think maybe we should get out of their house?

Our Preferred Partners
LKBIheiriUKsyMhq4Ki0hw30XbhaeWwcnLz4dh0uyAySZuk2VhjXkH4JAwaYFtDE