How to Handle Living with Big Bugs in the Tropics

Spider, Chiang Mai, Thailand


Pretty big boy in the loo.


Ok not that big. At least by my standards.


Last night at 1:30 AM I tripped to the crapper. As soon as the light illuminated the room I saw a small but still decent sized spider on the wall beside the toilet.


Being not a pussy, or, being a guy who has lived with such bugs and hella bigger bugs over the past 7 years I didn’t give him a second thought.


I did however preserve him via image for your viewing pleasure.


Last year in the same house in Thailand I showered with a Thai bird eating tarantula for 2 weeks. Each night he sat a few inches from my feet. Even after I learned how these guys are aggressive chaps I had little fear of the dude.




Besides seeing such creatures as normal house mates I learned the basic law of big bugs in the tropics; if you don’t scream like a little girl at creatures that are 10,000 times more scared of you than you are scared of them, and if you treat such creatures with respect, you will live harmoniously with some mean-looking bugs in tropical climes.


You Are the Guest


Farang in Thailand crack me up sometimes.


The masses may fear such bugs but a fair amount understand; the bugs called Thailand and the earth itself home millions of years before we arrived.


You are the guest.


The bugs were here eons before you.


Knowing this helps you respect the bugs versus the irrational fears most folks harbor toward little thingees.


Perfect energetic foundation for the other tips.


The Bug Fear Factor: They Are Terrified of You


Even though the 8 inch Scolopendra centipede I saw in this same house kinda scared me last year, he was 10,000 times more fearful of me. He knew me being a gazillion times bigger than him that I could take his ass out in a split second.


I respect life, largely, so I just batted him out of the house versus killing him. He was more afraid of me, a big old dinosaur whose vibrations felt like seismic tremors to the fearsome-looking ‘pede.


Remember; if you fear big bugs, big bugs fear you more than you fear them because you are hundreds of times their size and can kill any big bug in a split second.


Taking this attitude and respecting their home changes your perspective on big bugs.


Do Not Kill Big Bugs or Your Fear Grows


The only reason you kill a big bug is because you fear it based on:


  • its size
  • its menacing-looking nature
  • its actual capacity to hurt you or kill you


Guys; if a black widow or funnel web spider infiltrates your home I understand why you’d kill it. Something capable of killing you with a single bite is a tough customer to deal with. Do what you gotta do.


But harmless large spiders or roaches should be caught and released to the wild because killing any harmless living creature only instills the fear of said creatures deeper in your mind, creating a vicious mental monster that can adversely affect your travels.


Do not kill anything that cannot kill you.


I released:


  • a bird eating tarantula
  • an 8 inch long centipede
  • a large scorpion
  • various large cockroaches
  • other big bugs


from houses in the tropics because with each release my fear of big bugs dies more quickly.


Then when I can see a small but decent sized spider in the bathroom at 1:30 AM and not feel stirred by it at all, like seeing a gnat flying around.


Note; if you can find a specialist to remove deadly big bugs, do so. Or if you develop the skill to remove these guys, more power to you.