• Family: Apidae
  • Approximate # species in region: 1
  • Common name: large carpenter bees

Eastern carpenter bees Xylocopa virginica are one of our most conspicuous species in the region. Everybody loves to despise eastern carpenter bees Xylocopa virginica for boring into untreated decks and wood sidings, but we’ve eliminated most of their natural nesting sites by cutting down dead trees and snags. X. virginica can be found throughout the season foraging on a variety of flowers in gardens, especially tubular ones like Phlox, Buddleja, and Hosta where they rob nectar by chewing a hole in the base of the corolla. Males patrol territories and often divebomb pedestrians wearing brightly colored clothes. They are patterned like bumble bees but always large like queens (never smaller like workers), with a mustard thorax, a glossy black abdomen, and a brush of scopal hairs on the hind leg.  

Species covered:

Scientific NameCommon NamePhenologyHabitatForage
Xylocopa virginicaEastern carpenter beeSpring-FallWidespreadGeneralist

Species requiring accounts: none