Subject: Carpenter bee?
Location: Albuquerque, NM
July 10, 2017 12:48 pm
Hi – This bee was climbing in a hole the size of my pinkie in a wooden overhang. It was painted, but im not sure if the bee created this hole or the prior owner had drilled a hole leaving exposed wood. It was striped and where he was chewing, the wood began to swell. he never went fully in, just around the edge. I filled the hole with caulk and he went away. Thia is in Albuquerque, NM at about 5500 ft elevation in the hills. It was taken in June.
This looks to us like a Mason Bee in the family Megachilidae, possibly Lithurgopsis apicalis which is pictured on BugGuide. Of the family, BugGuide notes: “Some are leaf-cutters, nesting in ground, in cavities, wood. Tunnels are bored in wood or in the ground. Cell is provisioned with pollen (and nectar?), an egg laid, and cell is sealed over with circular pieces of leaves, clay or other materials that fit tightly into cavity.”