Kansas State University


Extension Entomology


–Dr. Jeff Whitworth

A couple folks viewed last weeks carpenter bee photos and thought they were bumble bees. This is a great example then to point out just how important it is to take the best possible photos before sending them in to be ID’d. Please take several closeups from several angles and please place some object beside the specimen, i.e., a penny, pencil, ruler, etc, will work, so we can get an idea of size.  Also very important, where the specimen was found and what was it found on, and how many were at that location and what were they doing-feeding/crawling on the ground, etc. The specimens last week were collected from insulation in an old garage and seemed to have smooth abdomens. See figure 3 for side by side comparison between a carpenter bee vs bumble bee.

Figure 3 carpenter bee (on the left) vs bumble bee (on the right)

Also, for those interested in trapping carpenter bees-please see Dr Phil Sloderbeck’s carpenter bee trap (fig 4). Dr Sloderbeck retired ca.6 years ago as a KSU Extension Entomologist and Southwest Kansas Area Administrator. But, (fig 5)as you can plainly see–Dr Phil is still an entomologist at heart! Happy retirement, Dr Phil, and thank you for the pictures!

Figure 4  bee trap (P. Sloderbeck)

Figure 5  captured 17 carpenter bees (P. Sloderbeck)


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