Great carpenter bee

A specimen of a great carpenter bee showing yellow thorax, black body and black wings

A male great carpenter bee resting on a tree trunk with a female great carpenter bee poking her head out of her small burrow in the tree trunk

A female great carpenter bee resting on a tree trunk

A male great carpenter bee entering a small burrow on a tree trunk

Xylocopa aruana

Should I report?

Great carpenter bees (Xylocopa aruana) are native to Australia. The great carpenter bee looks similar to the bumblebee but has a slightly different appearance. If you find a great carpenter bee you do not need to report it.


Female great carpenter bees have a black body with a yellow band on their thorax, male great carpenter bees have a pale brown body. Both genders are hairy and appear fat, they are approximately 19-25mm in length and have no distinct abdominal banding. Compared to the introduced European bumblebee that is found in Tasmania, great carpenter bees have only one yellow band on their thorax.


Great carpenter bees are found across all of Australia excluding Tasmania.


Great carpenter bees are buzz pollinators playing an important role in pollination services to flowering plants in particular to species that require buzz pollination.