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Discouraging Carpenter Bees

How to bumout and discourage carpenter bees. Cover their nesting tunnel holes with duct tape. Here's how:

  1. Buy a heavy duty, tough, pro grade brand of tape such as "Nashua 557"(not dollar store type)

  2. Tear off two pieces, each about 3 inches long, enough to cover two bee holes.

  3. Stick one end of one piece over hole. Press down hard onto wood beam. Take the second piece and stick it over the first one, making two layers. Press down hard.

Now wait for the diligent little sucker to start trying to 'break out' because he/she thinks "heck it's just thin cloth. Voila"! Eventually, it's little white nose will poke through a small hole in the thick sticky wall. Then it will probably, foolishly try to squeeze its body out when the hole is just barely large enough.

There's a "sticky" little problem here because it's hairy torso will become hopelessly glued in the tape's tough adhesive and here it will probably remain till death, unable to get out or back into the tunnel again. (This will be a nano-trophy-for the vindictive!)

However, if you're in a hurry and don't need any nano trophies. When you see there's a hole started in the tape - just peel your tape up, move it over an inch and stick it down once again. This forces the poor little critter to start clawing at the stinky, powerful adhesive wall all over again. Soon you'll notice bees moving away from places of human activity (such as your deck railing)! :)


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May 12, 20161 found this helpful

Carpenter bees must be dealt with, but are valuable as pollinators. I painted my outdoor wood as an effective deterrent. They only buzz your wood during mating/breeding or when sunny. My mother hung tarps over her railing and clipped them together at the bottom, thus preventing them from entering and drilling. They don't like water. Water is expensive so you cannot keep your sprinkler on all the time, but you can while they are hunting for a nest, or, like me (time-consuming), I keep a handy spray bottle with crushed garlic in it and zap them while mating in the air or reconnaissance. Someone should invent screening with a 1-way valve that allows them to fly OUT, but not fly back in. Sticky traps are cruel.

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May 16, 20161 found this helpful

Agree with Mary - cruel.

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May 17, 20160 found this helpful

I was weeding around my fence, not anywhere around any nesting carpenter bees, when I was attacked by a swarm of them. I simply heard one buzz go by, then they attacked. I cannot tell how many times I was stung, as many stung me on my head (and arms, hands, neck, upper body, and back). I am NOT allergic to bee stings, but did not respond to the three shots given to me by my doctor--thank God I had someone to take me to the medical center, then hospital. My body/organs started shutting down, and I easily could have died. I was bedridden for about a week, unable to even use the bathroom without help. I wasn't wearing any alluring colors, nor did I have any perfumes, scented deodorant, hairspray, etc, on.


I organic garden and have done so for over 55 years. My grandparents raised bees and I have always had respect for them. Carpenter bees are mean, aggressive insects; I have heard of several cases where they have attacked unprovoked. Please do not say getting rid of them is cruel--maybe after you lose someone you love, you'd change your mind. It took me years to pay off my medical bills from this incident. I'm considering raising honey bees, but carpenter bees need to go--they are destructive and dangerous. By-the-way, I only got away because my dog tried to help me, and they turned to attacking him. We lost him shortly after.

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May 24, 20160 found this helpful

Well I am an elem teacher of Science and work hard for my money. They love treated wood and come back every year. They have ruined many of my things. When the bees are done put steel wool in the hole and clear caulking made for wood. They will drill another hole but keep at it. Also you can go online under self pestcontrol and buy a duster. Then you buy a powder and dust the holes.


If you search online there is something you can do with a bottle but yall will say that's cruel. I only wish they ate my rails. True story about these darn bees I paid a pestcontrol comp to kill them. They had to come back 4 times. The 4th time they tented my whole roof area for the gazebo like they do for bedbugs except no heat. It kept them away for 5 yrs. This was not cost effective for me. So don't give up...

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May 26, 20160 found this helpful

Oh "the bottle" method ! I do it too: 1) short, worn 4x4 post, 2) drill 1 or 2 slant holes which meet the vertical bottle hole drilled in bottom of wood piece. 3) insert a bottle in base (large hole) & wrap sides of clear bottle with tape 1-2" high(hides your dieing prisoners from bees on outside!) 4) place wood horizontally overhanging porch rail, floor etc.


5) wait for "collection" to begin. :)

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May 26, 20160 found this helpful

Ahhem, "cruel" is deliberately seeking to kill masses of them for fun. The bees going for my fence etc I don't bother since it's non structural wood. But karma makes some beings walk into traps while others avoid them. Even Buddha said we shouldn't go to extremes letting insects take over our entire dwellings!

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April 26, 20180 found this helpful

A Carpenter Bee's worse nemesis is a nice badminton racket.

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