Carpenter bees have been very active the last few weeks and residents have been calling alarmed by these large bees flying near eaves. Quite often it is the male carpenter bee that is seen patrolling the area. The male carpenter bee is unable to sting and the females are not aggressive, but may bite and sting if handled. Males are easily distinguished from females by their white marking on their face.

Carpenter bees are large bees and similar in appearance to bumble bees, except the dorsal (top) surface of the abdomen is almost devoid of hairs and appears to be entirely black in the carpenter bee. Do not confuse the white-faced male carpenter bee with a bald-faced hornet which also has a white face. You are most likely to encounter a female bald-faced hornet and she is not forgiving.

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