Carpenter Bees, Xylocopa
There are a few species of this large black bee Carpenter Bee that are
native to California.
Mountain Carpenter Bee, Xylocopa tabaniformis orpifex
Valley Carpenter Bee, Xylocopa brasilianorum varipuncta
California Carpenter Bee, Xylocopa californica californica
the intermediate between californica and arizonica is Xylocopa
Arizona Carpenter Bee, Xylocopoides californica
Carpenter bees have certain tastes in wood and prefer good wood, not
rotten wood for nesting material. Xylocopa tabaniformis
orpifex is the most problematic for buildings and loves
redwood or cedar posts (or trees) and will spend weeks digging a 1/2 by
4-6 inch hole into same for their nest site. The other species use a
variety of woody material from Alder, Douglas Fir, Fruit trees,
Cottonwood, Redwood, Cedar Eucalyptus, Walnut, Yucca and other
soft woody material. Xylocopoides californica
arizonensis, likes desert plants like Agave, Cottonwood,(along
washes) and Yucca. Xylocopa
californica diamesa, seems to prefer Yucca.
If you find these busy bees digging into your house, bug it to
leave and plug the hole. That is usually enough to get it to move to
your neighbors house. Barns build out of redwood or cedar have
a tendency to be very holy here.