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Carpenter Bee Holocaust!

4441 Views 11 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  Mike the Rookie
I've been watching over the past week as carpenter bees force their way into my hive. I have the entrance reducer in, set to the larger opening, though backed off a little from the entrance. Also a cork hole in the middle box.

Today I decided to go try to do something about it. I have no idea where their colony was, but I have been seeing them crawling on the ivy in front of my girls' hive, so that's where I started. Stomped about 10 there, then covered the area in a couple hundred pounds of sand. Then I set up shop sitting on a cinderblock next to the hive entrance with my pocket knife and killed them as they crawled up the front. Probably another 20 before I had to go.

Everything I have read tells me Carpenter bees are a small colony species, but that was a higher body count than I was expecting. Last year, there were absolutely none. None that I saw anyway.

Any ideas about how to trap or kill more? Can't find the nest, unless its in the old mulch I poured the sand on. And obviously proximity to my girls would rule out pesticide.
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Mike, correct... but it does happen sometimes. Carpenter bees are fiercely territorial though.. and more than likely that's the reason they are hanging out in front of your hives is that they see each honey bee as a potential contender for female carpenter bee attention. Usually they'll just chase the girls around and the girls for the most part just ignore them. I've never seen a carpenter bee try to gain entrance into a hive before though. I have seen bumble-bees do that though, could you be seeing bumble-bees instead of carpenter bees perhaps?
 
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