Carpenter bees can come in a variety of colors depending upon where you live. Even though there are a variety of carpenter bees there are a handful of characteristics to identify a carpenter bee.
The diagram above shows the following defining physical characteristics of a carpenter bee:
- Length: Typically 1 inch long
- Legs: 4 fuzzy black legs
- Mandibles: Used for digging through wood
- Abdomen: Hard, black and shiny
- Thorax: Mid-section of the body with a fuzzy texture
- Antenna: How the bee senses or smells things
The shiny hard abdomen is the most distinguishing physical trait of the carpenter bee regardless of the variety in your area. Because of their large size, it is easy to see the abdomen without getting too close. The thorax of the carpenter bee will display the colors on the fuzzy, small hairs. The most common colors are yellow, white, black and brown.
Female carpenter bees do sting, so please use caution when inspecting areas with possible carpenter bee infestation!