Genus Xylocopa

Carpenter-Bees

Biology

Carpenter Bees feed on pollen and nectar and often tunnel into exposed, dry wood (buildings, fences, poles and other structures), preferring softer woods for their nests. Over a period of time, wood damage from a large number of Carpenter Bees can be severe.

Carpenter Bees are not social, but may establish burrows close to one another. Carpenter Bees do not sting and make a loud buzzing noise while in flight. Measuring about one inch long with no hair on their abdomen, Carpenter Bees are similar in their look to Bumble Bees, and some species have a blue/black, green or purple sheen.

Carpenter Bees produce one generation each year (within the U.S.) and mature from egg to adult in 80 to 100 days. The female spreads the nest with “bee bread,” a mixture of pollen and regurgitated nectar, to lay her eggs on top of.

Factoid

Carpenter bees can be important pollinators on open-faced flowers, even obligate pollinators on some, such as the Maypop (Passiflora incarnata), though many species are also known to “rob” nectar by slitting the sides of flowers with deep corollas. (Factoid Source: wikipedia)

Video