Most humans get a bit finicky when they hear buzzing nearby and most don’t care to identify the species, rather they just want to get away in fear of being stung. For this reason, bees can be a serious pest, especially towards those who are allergic to their venom. Certain bee species, like the carpenter bee, can also place the structure of your home at risk by burrowing their nests and laying their eggs into the siding of your house. Even with these nuisance behaviors, it is imperative to weigh the risks with the benefits they offer our ecosystem.
There are hundreds of different kinds of bees in Michigan alone, not including its cousins, the wasp, hornet, and yellowjacket. Before you unknowingly spray a pesticide, determine what insect you’re really up against. It’s important to know the particular insect you are facing as bees are a necessary part of our agriculture system from their pollination of plants and the honey they produce; they should not be predisposed to mass extermination. Creature Control can accurately identify the insect problem you are facing and prescribe treatment.
Carpenter bees make their nests in softwood trees such as redwood, cedar, cypress, and pine and because these woods are often used in home construction, bees find your wooden siding attractive to live in. The tunnels a carpenter bee builds can weaken the structure of your home itself overtime. Initially, homeowners may notice a bee or two hovering around the outside of their home, only to find soon that these bees are accompanied by several small, perfectly round holes in the siding, almost as if somebody had come by with a power drill and drilled holes into the home. While one carpenter bee hole is not that big of a problem, the larvae that hatch in the nest will begin expanding the tunnel structure the following year. This damage can be extremely significant as a single house can theoretically host dozens of carpenter bee nests.
The carpenter bee will begin a nest in the siding of a home by excavating an entry point in the wood with their powerful jaws. Unlike termites, carpenter bees do not eat the wood they excavate; the sawdust from excavated wood gets pushed out of the resulting hole. The hole will always be very close to 1/2 inch in diameter. The bee will dig straight back for about an inch and then suddenly turn at a 90-degree angle and continue drilling for several more inches. The end of this tunnel will serve as a chamber for the female carpenter bee to lay her eggs in (a single nest may contain 6 to 8 chambers). The construction of the nest at a 90-degree angle ensures that the egg chamber cannot be reached by birds or other predators sticking their noses into the nest opening. This also means that you cannot destroy the carpenter beehive by just jabbing around in the hole with a long object.
The best preventative against carpenter bee infestations is simply to paint all exterior wood. For structures that are already infested, a carpenter bee treatment will be required. Each hole will need a covering of insecticidal dust capable of coating the interior walls of the tunnel. Carpenter bee holes sometimes need to be treated numerous times over a 1 – 2 week period. Only after each hole has been thoroughly treated with insecticidal dust is it safe to fill in the holes with pieces of dowel rod coated in wood glue. After managing existing tunnels, the surface should be painted to discourage further drilling. There are insecticide sprays that can be applied to untreated wood surfaces that will deter carpenter bees, though these need to be repeated usually twice per year, at least.
*It is essential that you do not try to plug carpenter bee holes before applying insecticide, as they are skilled diggers and this will only encourage them to dig out a new entry point.
Any stinging insect can trigger an anaphylactic reaction in a human. Anaphylaxis is an acute hypersensitivity reaction brought on by the exposure to a certain allergen, in this case, an allergic reaction to the venom. It is difficult to determine if one is at risk or not since people can develop anaphylaxis over time. A person who was not allergic to bee and wasp stings as a youth may become so as they get older. Whenever you are stung by a wasp or bee, monitor your condition carefully and always be prepared to seek medical attention if circumstances warrant it. Signs of an anaphylactic reaction are hives, rashes on the skin, shortness of breath, abdominal pain, light-headedness, and sweating. If you think you have an anaphylactic reaction, seek medical attention immediately.
What should you do if you get stung by a bee or wasp, provided you are not allergic to them and there is no danger of anaphylaxis, follow these simple steps:
Scratching during the day may indicate the presence of a bat, but this is uncommon.
More common sources of scratching or clawing during the day is a squirrel or a yellowjacket hive in the drywall, if it is summer.
A scratching sound coming from the attic is a good indication of the presence of a bat. The scratching may be constant or intermittent and may occur at day or night, though with a bat, this scratching will usually be heard at night. This is the sounds of the claws on the bat's wings as it moves around.
It may also indicate the presence of mice, however. An inspection is necessary to more directly pinpoint the source of the sound.
Gnawing sounds during the day are almost always due to the presence of a rodent, such a mouse, squirrel, chipmunk, or sometimes a rat. Rodents are characterized by their large incisor teeth, which continually grow and must be worn down by constant gnawing. Rodents will gnaw on wires, insulation and anything else they can find in an attic. Many house fires due to electrical problems are caused by damaged wires due to squirrel gnawing.
If you are hearing gnawing or chewing sounds at night, it may indicate the presence of a raccoon. Usually this will be accompanied by other noises, such as heavy walking. If you do not hear this, it may be a flying squirrel or some other rodent.
A "rolling" sound is usually due to the presence of a red squirrel bringing in nuts or other debris and rolling it around up in the attic, as squirrels will use attics to hoard food. If you hear this sound during the day, it is certainly a red squirrel, since red squirrels are the only mammals that commonly get into attics that are active during the day (flying squirrels get into attics as well but they are nocturnal). The "rolling" sound associated with a squirrel is sometimes described as the sound of marbles rolling.
If it is not a squirrel, there's a possibility a rolling sound could be made by birds moving around in a tight space.
Rolling sounds at night can be caused by flying squirrels, which are nocturnal. It is made by the squirrel bringing nuts or other debris into the attic or wall.
Raccoons may also make a rolling sound, though this is less common.
Scampering or scurrying during the day is almost always attributable to a squirrel, as most other scurrying animals (such as mice) are nocturnal.
A scurrying or scampering sound at night is usually due to mice moving through the walls, ceiling, or along the floor.
Nocturnal flying squirrels may make this noise as well; peak periods of activity for flying squirrels are just before dawn and shortly after sunset. Their scurrying is light and fast.
Raccoons may also make this sort of noise, but with a raccoon it will be more of a "walking" sound, a bit heavier than a squirrel, and not as fast.
Heavy walking or crawling is a very unique sound that almost always indicates the presence of a raccoon, whether it occurs during the day or night.
If you can clearly hear the sound of flapping during the day, it is definitely a bird.
If you hear flapping at night, it is either a trapped bird or a bat. Nuisance birds are generally not active at night, so if you hear flapping it may be a bird that has become trapped. The flapping of a bat's wings is very soft, almost like a dull whirring. If you hear a very faint, soft whirring, it may mean a bat is flying around nearby in the dark.
Crackling is a very particular noise that is generally made by a yellowjacket hive within the drywall of your home. yellowjackets will pick and gnaw on drywall and use the pieces to construct their hives. The sound of this gnawing is often described as a crackling; it sounds a lot like Rice Krispies popping. If you hear this, it means the yellowjackets are close to gnawing through the dry wall. It is not as common at night, but certainly can happen then as well if the hive is big enough.
Crackling is a very particular noise that is generally made by the presence of a yellowjacket hive within the drywall of your home. yellowjackets will pick and gnaw on drywall and use the pieces to construct their hives. The sound of this gnawing is often described as a crackling; it sounds a lot like Rice Krispies popping. If you hear this, it means the yellowjackets are close to gnawing through the dry wall.
A sound of chirping or chattering usually means there are baby animals present. What species depends on the season, but it is very common for baby squirrels, raccoons, or birds (especially chimney swifts) to make these noises. Please contact Creature Control for a more thorough diagnosis.