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How do I recognize honey bees versus wood bees?
By Ed from Naples, FL
Carpenter (Wood?) Bees do not "eat" wood or your house. Instead, they drill holes in house wood, trees, etc., to form a place to lay their eggs. The males are not able to sting, the females can sting but rarely. They are too busy drilling a new egg home.
I just want to make a remark about carpenter bees not/rarely stinging. A few years ago, I was weeding my flower beds when I heard a single buzz go by. A moment later, I was attacked by a swarm of carpenter bees. I was not near a nest and did nothing to provoke them (wear a specific color of clothing, wear perfume, etc). I was raised with bees; this was a shock.
I had a huge medical bill since I did not respond to any of the three shots given for stings, and no, I am not allergic to bee stings, yet I almost died. If you know you are near a nesting area, beware. By the way, they attacked my dog who was outside with me too.
The probably were not carpenter bees. Carpenter bees are not social, meaning they do not get alone with each other nor do they swarm. You may see many in the same area if they all have nests but they tend to chase each other. Males to not have stingers, the females do and you certainly won't find a group of females together with the pms and all. My guess is you probably disturbed a nest of some type of ground hornet and that is what attacked you and your dog
They say males won't sting and it is extremely rare for females to sting but when I was younger I was stung by a carpenter bee just walking through the yard. A few hours later I started feeling really weak, dizzy and nauseas then I couldn't stop throwing up (violently and non-stop). I was taken to the ER where I was in serious bad shape and almost died.
What you had an encounter with was bumblebees. Google them and you will see that they resemble Carpenter bees, but instead of nesting in wood, they nest in old rodent holes, leaf piles, stone fences, and sometimes aboveground in sheds, or other protected structures with an opening. My brother got a nest in the rumbleseat of a rusty old vintage car he was trying to restore! And they do sting. They are very territorial, and will swarm out if you get near or disturb the nest area.
Wood bees are much bigger and boar holes into wood .
Carpenter bees look like bumble bees, big ones. Honey bees are small and kind of tan/brown in color.
I sure didn't know bees suffered from Post Menopausal Syndrome.
Live and learn!