Some “pests” are pestier than others!
The more challenging it is to get rid of a pest that is causing damage to your home in one way, shape, or form, causes me to label it “pestier” than others.
There are all types of creepy crawlies that many folks refer to as “pests” that create damage around the home – carpenter ants, mice, termites, you name it
Perhaps near the top of the pestiest of them all, for me,
would be Carpenter Bees.
As far as bees are concerned,
carpenter bees are not really that harmful.
The males may appear to be a bit feisty (they do like to dive bomb beings that they feel are coming into their territory) but they do not even have stingers (and they would not “bite” per se!).
The females have stingers,
but will only resort to trying to sting if they are being bothered.
Where the carpenter bees create damage, is by burrowing into various areas around the home (I usually see them in trim areas high above or various areas around porch ceilings, etc.).
Carpenter bees are unlike other bees in that they do not live in colonies.
To a degree, they are loners, and when you see their damage, it is typically the females chewing circular holes to make places to lay eggs and protect their larvae as they develop.
These holes can be quite extensive and are often noticed when a homeowner happens to stumble upon varying degrees of carpenter bee excrement, which is often found on the area of a home directly below a place where carpenter bees have been burrowing.
The crazy thing about these pests, is that although they can cause quite a bit of damage to your home, they are extraordinary pollinators!!
Knowing this, I come across situations where people are often torn as to how to address them.
Assuming you would like to be rid of them, they are not very easy to stop, as even with pest control treatments, they often come back to the same spot, or a spot nearby, soon after a treatment has been done.
There are a variety of recommendations throughout the internet in terms of how to stop them.
My recommendation is that if you do move forward with some type of pest control for carpenter bees, do not close their holes up right away.
Instead, keep an eye on the area that was treated and its nearby places to make sure that the carpenter bees are indeed gone.
Once you are convinced that the carpenter bees are no longer around your home, wait until later in the Fall to work toward correcting any damage that they may have done.
My further recommendation is to replace the damaged wood with pressure treated (or some other chemically treated wood) or composite material where possible and to keep all painted surfaces properly maintained.
Carpenter bees sure can create a dilemma between their usefulness in pollination and the damage that they can cause to someone’s home.
Believe it or not, there are systems out there that try to attract carpenter bees away from areas on the home that they may be in the process of damaging, but at the same time try to keep them near the home to benefit from the way that they pollinate.
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Whatever the case may be, out of all the pests I typically come across, carpenter bees present the most challenge in terms of quickly stopping them from damaging someone’s home over a long term basis.