The Best Carpenter Bee Traps of 2023

Free your home and yard from invading carpenter bees using bee traps baited with an alluring attractant.

By Timothy Dale | Updated Apr 3, 2023 4:29 PM

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The Best Carpenter Bee Trap Option

Photo: depositphotos.com

Carpenter bees are relatively peaceful insects that aid in vegetation pollination and rarely attack humans. This is mostly because carpenter bees cannot bite, and only the female bee has a stinger. However, these bees are known for making nests inside wooden structures, including homes, which can negatively impact structural integrity and lead to water damage, rot, and potential collapse.

Traps for carpenter bees are designed to keep homes protected from these burrowing pests. By hanging one or more traps around the home, any invading carpenter bees will be drawn to the traps. The best carpenter bee trap can either be a bee collector, which uses confusing tunnels and simple physics to trap bees, or a sticky trap that uses adhesive to trap bees. Both types are included in the list of top products below. Keep reading to find out more about these options and what shoppers need to know before selecting a carpenter bee trap.

  1. BEST OVERALL: Mac’s Carpenter Bee Trap
  2. BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Stingmon 2-Pack Carpenter Bee Traps
  3. BEST STICKY TRAPS: Rescue! Carpenter Bee TrapStik
  4. BEST LARGE COLLECTOR: Original B Brothers 2-Pack Carpenter Bee Trap
  5. BEST ATTRACTANT: Rescue! Non-Toxic W-H-Y Trap Attractant Refill
The Best Carpenter Bee Trap Option

Photo: amazon.com

How We Chose the Best Carpenter Bee Trap

We looked at the wide range of carpenter bee solutions available on the market and did our research to curate a list of top picks for the best bee trap products across a range of categories.

Our list of recommendations provides shoppers with options for both sticky traps and collector traps, depending on user preference. For those looking to supplement their existing traps with better carpenter bee bait, we found the best attractant option that is suitable for use across a range of applications—not only the specific trap it’s intended for.

We’re aware that some users prefer to have as little contact as possible with the aftermath of insect traps, so we also made sure to include a variety of options in terms of how the traps are emptied, cleaned, and disposed of.

Our Top Picks

This lineup of top picks features a selection of some of the best carpenter bee traps for protecting a home from burrowing pests. The products were chosen based on the important considerations detailed later in this guide, with an emphasis on product efficacy, quality, and value.

Best Overall

The Best Carpenter Bee Trap Option: Mac’s Carpenter Bee Trap
Photo: amazon.com

Mac’s affordable and durable carpenter bee trap features a compact design that can be hung up around the house without taking up a lot of space. The small size of the wooden block makes it a good choice for the front porch, and while the collection cup at the base doesn’t hold much, it should encourage users to check the trap regularly.

The prebaited trap is made with natural wood that mimics the appearance of a carpenter bee nest, so users can be confident that nearby carpenter bees will be lured in. This bee collector trap is a great option for homes with children and pets because it doesn’t use chemicals, and the included chain allows the trap to be hung high up on the house, out of reach from curious kids and critters.

Product Specs

  • Type: Bee collector
  • Weather resistance: Suitable year-round
  • Reusable? Yes

Pros

  • Durable wooden construction withstands harsh weather and attractive design looks good outdoors
  • Collection jar is very easy to check from a distance; emptying is simple
  • Trap arrives prebaited with natural scent that attracts carpenter bees

Cons

  • Users report varied effectiveness with included bait; they may wish to add a different bait
  • Wood may begin to crack over time

Get the Mac’s carpenter bee trap at Amazon.

Best Bang for the Buck

The Best Carpenter Bee Trap Option: Stingmon 2-Pack Carpenter Bee Traps
Photo: amazon.com

This carpenter bee trap is an excellent option for homes with kids and pets because it’s a simple plastic container that’s completely free of toxic chemicals. The trap has a bright color and tunnels around the entire structure, which is a design that resembles flowers. Once a carpenter bee enters a tunnel, it cannot escape the trap. Simply fill the bottom of the trap with bait, such as beer, wine, or vinegar, and attract carpenter bees without using harmful substances.

Shoppers can choose from a wide selection of colors and designs that best suit their needs. In addition, these traps are effective at catching most other kinds of bees, wasps, and flying insects. Simply hang it up with the lanyard provided near areas where bees are commonly found. The detachable bottom is easy to remove for cleaning.

Product Specs

  • Type: Bee collector
  • Weather resistance: Suitable spring through fall
  • Reusable? Yes

Pros

  • Attractive and colorful design looks nice in the garden
    More environmentally friendly option that does not use harmful chemicals
    Detachable bottom is easy to remove for emptying and cleaning

Cons

  • Actually emptying this trap of the bees can be quite messy

Get the Stingmon carpenter bee trap at Amazon.

Best Sticky Traps

The Best Carpenter Bee Trap Option: Rescue! Carpenter Bee TrapStik
Photo: amazon.com

This carpenter bee sticky trap features a bird guard that surrounds the entire trap to help prevent birds and rodents from becoming stuck to the powerful adhesive. While the glue is not powerful enough to stick to human skin, the trap should still be placed out of reach of children and pets.

TrapStik does not use any poisons or attractant chemicals to lure insects. Instead, the brightly colored design in the center attracts carpenter bees, hornets, wasps, and yellow jackets. Once stuck to the adhesive, insects cannot fly away; plus, the pheromones produced by the dead bugs attract more carpenter bees to the trap.

The sticky trap comes with a rope that can be used to hang the unit either horizontally or vertically depending on the location and user preference. The adhesive on the trap is designed to withstand rain, sleet, and snow for 2 to 3 months before the trap will need to be replaced. Note that carpenter bee emergence tends to come between early March to June.

Product Specs

  • Type: Sticky trap
  • Weather resistance: Suitable spring through fall
  • Reusable? No

Pros

  • Very easy setup directly out of the box; no need to add bait
  • Disposal is simple; no need to clean out messy traps for reuse
  • Effective against other flying insects, including wasps and yellow jackets

Cons

  • Some users report that very small birds may get caught on the adhesive

Get the Rescue! TrapStik carpenter bee trap at Amazon or Ace Hardware.

Best Large Collector

The Best Carpenter Bee Trap Option: Original B Brothers 2-Pack Carpenter Bee Trap
Photo: amazon.com

This pair of wood boring bee traps may be ideal for tackling large infestations because they don’t fill up quickly. When the jars become full, they can be emptied, cleaned, and reused to continue catching pests. The hardwood trap has a natural look that isn’t obtrusive in the landscape, and its entrance hole is likely to attract insects.

This natural design is prebaited to lure bees before they can take up residence in the user’s home. Each trap also features a large glass mason jar attached by the lid to the base of the trap. The size of the jar makes it possible to trap a large number of carpenter bees before it needs to be emptied and cleaned.

Product Specs

  • Type: Bee collector
  • Weather resistance: Suitable year-round
  • Reusable? Yes

Pros

  • Designed to trap a large number of bees before needing to be emptied
  • Comes prebaited with natural wood scent—an excellent carpenter bee attractant
  • Transparent glass jars make it easy to see when they’re full, and screw cap makes them simple to empty and clean

Cons

  • Over time, the wood can start to split if exposed to harsh outdoor weather
  • Wood scent can start to wear off and may require additional bait for long-term results

Get the Original B Brothers carpenter bee trap at Amazon or Original B Brothers (single).

Best Attractant

The Best Carpenter Bee Trap Option: Rescue! Non-Toxic W-H-Y Trap Attractant Refill
Photo: amazon.com

This attractant refill is made for baiting Rescue! sticky traps, but the bait can be used with other brands of bee collectors and sticky traps. The attractant is effective at drawing up to 19 different species of flying insects, such as hornets, wasps, yellow jackets, carpenter bees, paper wasps, and bald-faced hornets.

This attractant is a good choice for users having trouble luring carpenter bees into their traps. The active ingredient, heptyl butyrate, produces a fruity odor that attracts carpenter bees to the trap. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, heptyl butyrate is a food-grade chemical found in apples and plums; it is nontoxic and safe to use around kids and pets.

Product Specs

  • Type: Attractant for use in all kinds of stick or collector traps
  • Weather resistance: Used in traps typically suitable for spring through fall
  • Reusable? No

Pros

  • A simple and cost-effective refill product to use in existing traps
  • This bait is specifically designed to attract a host of insect species
  • Ideal for use as additional bait in existing traps to extend their effectiveness

Cons

  • Users report a wide range of effectiveness of this attractant

Get the Rescue! W-H-Y carpenter bee trap at Amazon or Ace Hardware (single pack).

Or, DIY Your Own Carpenter Bee Trap

Folks looking to avoid toxic chemicals or interested in a more hands-on approach to dealing with a carpenter bee problem may wish to build their very own trap. This project is suitable for beginners and should only take around 30 minutes to complete. It’s also pretty cost effective. Check out our article on how to make a carpenter bee trap and follow the steps.

Jump to Our Top Picks



What to Consider When Choosing a Carpenter Bee Trap 

There are a few things to think about when shopping for a carpenter bee trap. Before deciding on the best trap to keep a home safe from burrowing bees, it’s important to determine the type of trap to use. There also are other critical factors to consider, like weather resistance, ease of use, and versatility.

Bee Collector vs. Sticky Traps

Carpenter bee traps fall into two categories based on the way they trap insects and how they look.

  • Bee collector carpenter bee traps are made of either plastic or wood, the former designed to resemble a birdhouse and the latter having a flowerlike appearance. These traps feature holes or tunnels that invading carpenter bees enter. Once bees enter, they are funneled through a series of winding tunnels that lead to a plastic or glass jar at the bottom of the trap. The bees become stuck in the jar and die, then release pheromones that draw more carpenter bees into the trap. One of the benefits of these traps is that they are reusable, so buyers won’t need to invest in new traps every year.
  • Sticky traps use attractants, baits, lures, fluorescent colors, and multidimensional patterns to draw carpenter bees, wasps, yellow jackets, and other flying insects to the adhesive strip where they become stuck and die. Dead carpenter bees release a pheromone that draws in more insects. However, sticky traps are not reusable, so they need to be replaced when they are full or when the adhesive becomes ineffective from accumulated dirt, dust, or debris.

Weather Resistance

Any pest control solution that is used outside the home needs to have some type of weather resistance to prevent it from becoming completely ineffective after the first rain. Bee collector traps are well suited to outdoor environments. They’re typically made of wood and glass, resembling a bird feeder. The roof on the trap prevents water from running into the hole, but even if water does get inside, it shouldn’t damage the trap. Simply pour out any accumulated water.

Sticky traps may be more susceptible to the elements; the chemical adhesive can freeze, for instance, or can be weakened by rain. Due to potential weather damage, sticky traps tend to last for about 2 to 3 months.

Ease of Use

Protecting the home from invading carpenter bees shouldn’t be difficult, and it’s important that traps can be quickly and effectively set before damage can be done. Fortunately, carpenter bee traps are relatively easy to use. Simply hang the trap in a location frequented by carpenter bees, such as the top corner of the house or inside a wooden shed. Bee collectors are generally made with a natural wood scent to draw carpenter bees in. When the bees die, the jar can be removed, emptied, and replaced without having to move the trap.

Sticky traps can be hung in the same places as bee collectors, but they should be placed out of reach of kids and pets. While they usually need to be replaced every 2 to 3 months, if the sticky trap is very successful, the adhesive will fill up quickly and require replacement sooner.

Both bee collectors and sticky traps can be baited with a bee and hornet attractant that is designed to be more tempting to carpenter bees. Common attractants use the active ingredient heptyl butyrate to lure bees to the trap with a fruity odor, which can also attract wasps, hornets, and yellow jackets, taking care of more than one pest with a single trap.

Versatility

Bee collector traps are a great option for drawing in carpenter bees, and their natural design makes them a good option for homes with kids and pets. Plus, they will not negatively impact local insects or wildlife. However, they aren’t useful for trapping a wide variety of pests, so users may find the area free of carpenter bees but still plagued by hornets, wasps, and yellow jackets.

Sticky traps are more versatile for eradicating a variety of pests. The adhesive is completely indiscriminate about what it catches, and the bright colors and multidimensional shapes draw in a broad range of flying insects. The drawback is that they can catch unintended wildlife, like butterflies, honey bees, bumblebees, and even small birds, so it’s important to look for a product with a protective design and place it away from flowering plants.

FAQs 

Pest problems don’t often go away on their own. If you want to be able to enjoy your home without worrying that carpenter bees may also be making their way in, it’s important to know how these traps work so you can use them effectively. The answers to some of the most commonly asked questions about these traps can provide essential info.

Q. When should I put out carpenter bee traps?

Carpenter bee traps should be put out at the beginning of spring and should be left out all summer because the pheromones released by dead carpenter bees actually draw live carpenter bees into the trap.

Q. Where is the best place to put a carpenter bee trap?

The best place to put a carpenter bee trap is high on any corner of the home so that the bees have full access to the trap and it’s easy for them to see the entrance.

Q. What do you put in carpenter bee traps to attract them?

Baits and attractants are good options for drawing carpenter bees into the traps. Heptyl butyrate is the chemical primarily responsible for attracting carpenter bees, wasps, hornets, and yellowjackets, which is why the Rescue! W-H-Y carpenter bee trap is one of the best attractants available.

Why Trust Bob Vila

Bob Vila has been America’s Handyman since 1979. As the host of beloved and groundbreaking TV series including “This Old House” and “Bob Vila’s Home Again,” he popularized and became synonymous with “do-it-yourself” home improvement.

Over the course of his decades-long career, Bob Vila has helped millions of people build, renovate, repair, and live better each day—a tradition that continues today with expert yet accessible home advice. The Bob Vila team distills need-to-know information into project tutorials, maintenance guides, tool 101s, and more. These home and garden experts then thoroughly research, vet, and recommend products that support homeowners, renters, DIYers, and professionals in their to-do lists.

Timothy Dale is a freelance writer, specializing in the home repair and construction niche. He spent his post-secondary years working in the plumbing trade, while completing degrees in English Literature and Psychology, before taking on a Project Management position that ended up lasting 10 years. Mr. Dale has worked in residential plumbing and carpentry over his time as a Project Manager and also spent a year of his career in the commercial and industrial sector.