Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada

Species Xylocopa californica - Western Carpenter Bee

Arizona Carpenter Bee - Xylocopa californica - female Very Big Bee - Xylocopa californica Bombus - Xylocopa californica - female Female carpenter bee from NW Yosemite - Xylocopa californica - female Carpenter Bee ID? - Xylocopa californica - male Xylocopa californica arizonensis - Xylocopa californica Black Carpenter Bee - Xylocopa californica Xylocopa sp. - Xylocopa californica
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Hymenoptera (Ants, Bees, Wasps and Sawflies)
No Taxon (Aculeata - Ants, Bees and Stinging Wasps)
No Taxon (Anthophila (Apoidea) - Bees)
Family Apidae (Cuckoo, Carpenter, Digger, Bumble, and Honey Bees)
Subfamily Xylocopinae (Carpenter Bees)
Genus Xylocopa (Large Carpenter Bees)
No Taxon (Subgenus Xylocopoides)
Species californica (Western Carpenter Bee)
20-25 mm
Typical large carpenter bee, all black with some bluish/greenish reflections. Male has some lighter markings on pronotum, abdominal segment 1. Compare other Carpenter bees in range, such as X. varipuncta.
Utah, Nevada, California, north to Oregon, south into Mexico.
Forests and nearby meadows
Adults fly in late summer
The Hosts section on its Discover Life species page lists known associations based on specimen records and images.
Print References
Milne describes life history and illustrates X. californica, p. 861, fig. 497 (1)
Powell and Hogue, p. 353--cf. X. varipuncta, fig. 457 (2)
Internet References
Works Cited
1.National Audubon Society Field Guide to Insects and Spiders
Lorus and Margery Milne. 1980. Knopf.
2.California Insects
Jerry A. Powell, Charles L. Hogue. 1989. University of California Press.