Hi! We live in a row of 100+ year old townhouses in a densely populated area. Our house is brick but our neighbor’s is wood. Each spring we have 4 or 5 annoying male carpenter bees in our yard which is too small to avoid the bees. Last year I saw one female (who appeared to be crawling under the fence to our neighbor’s yard). It looks like we have at most 2 holes in our side of the fence (based on where the males hover), but more bees come over the fence to fight with “our bees.” What do you recommend? Killing the ones we see and treating the holes in our side? We tried Raid, but even if we spray them directly they don’t die. If we get rid of our bees will it attract fewer other males from other yards? Thanks!
Carpenter bee males will linger where they suspect females to be present. Drilled holes leave female scent and will most definitely attract males. These need to be filled with DRIONE DUST and CORKED as explained in our CARPENTER BEE ARTICLE if there is ever to be a chance of the males leaving and staying away from this area.
Additionally, the fence should be treated with CYPERMETHRIN to chase away new females and help prevent new holes from being drilled. The alternative spray would be the NBS. Either one can safely be used on the fence and plants and this needs to be done if you wish to repel the bees from the area.
Now will this make all the males go away? Probably not. But it will definitely decrease their activity and since the males don’t sting, any fear you have of them is unfounded because they cannot do any damage. But as long as you have the fence and it remains untreated (meaning the nests and the wood surface), there is a strong likelihood females will try to nest in it and this will lead to males. And since males can “smell” prime nest locations, they’re no doubt attracted to the wood even before the females come around.
Lastly, killing the males you see will only lead to more coming around because these guys cruise in very distinct “territories”. And once you make the territory available by killing the currently occupying bee, another virile male will take it over almost immediately.
Here are direct links to the information and products listed above:
Carpenter Bee Control: http://www.carpenterbees.com/carpenter-bee-control