Picture of a male Carpenter Bee used with permission from http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/6/63/Xylocopa-varipuncta-male.jpg

Quick Facts

1. One of the largest bees in the United States (Green Valley pc 2007).

2. Species nests by burrowing into wood using their wide, powerful mandibles or jaws (Nickerson 2001).

3. X. varipuncta flap their wings roughly 230 times per second (Live Science 2006).

4. Average Adult body length of 1/2-1" (12.5-25 mm) (Green Valley pc 2007).

5. X. varipuncta closely resembles the bumble bee (Nickerson 2001).Female Carpenter Bee on top of a flower. Picture is used with permission from Wikipedia Commons.

6. Some substantial differences in gender.

7. Prefer to nest in wood that is untreated and unfinished softwoods including redwood, cypress,  Douglas fir, mimosa, ash, white pine, dead wood on trees, and cedar woods (Carpenter Bees).

8. Docile in nature and care more about their offspring than the nest itself.

9. Pollinate a wide variety of food plants making them very useful to, not only humans, but all animals that eat plants.

10. The Valley Carpenter Bee, has been under controversy of late on the premise of insect

sociality (Hurd 1995).


Click the species link Xylocopa virginica, to learn about a similar bee of the same genus.