Bangkok Wildlife: Part 2

Bangkok Wildlife: Part 2

Posted on 16. Dec, 2009 by in Thailand

Again, people aren’t the only things living in the big city. Some animals and bugs have found a way to live amidst the traffic and crowds. Let’s continue our list with “The Creepy Ones“…

9. Ants

As I have said before, Thai ants do NOT march one by one. When they’ve found something interesting, it is more like 5 by 5. There are all sorts of different types of ants, too. The miniscule black ants are what I was battling against in my kitchen. In the teachers’ office we battle red and black ones that like to bite. There are also big black ants, and these especially creepy looking red ants with long legs. Ants are a part of life. Forget leaving your dishes until the next morning- if you leave food out for half an hour, it will be covered in ants.

10. Cockroaches

If you’re looking, you will notice cockroaches on any walk down the street after dark. I am very thankful not to have these guys in our apartment. The only one we had was when we left the window open one evening and it flew in. This is another creature we see squished on our road. And they’re big, too. About 3 inches long! Most often we see them while we’re sitting at a street vendor’s shop waiting for food. They’re pretty creepy.

11. Mosquitoes

Since we’re on the subject of bugs, mosquitoes must be mentioned. They’re here. And they bite. Mostly when you’re in an area by water- like near the canal (“klong”). Thankfully, malaria isn’t really a risk in Bangkok.


12. Snakes

In a recent conversation my student was asking me what kind of dangerous animals we had in my hometown. Well, unless you’re one of the very few who happen upon a bear, there isn’t much lurking in Northern Wisconsin. Thailand is a different story. And one of the worst offenders are snakes. Our friend Sarah was eating at an open-air restaurant in Bangkok that had a lot of landscaping (plants, ponds, etc). At one point she noticed the waitstaff pointing under her table and she looked down to see a 6-foot cobra slithering between her legs! A baby cobra was also spotted in the office building we often walk through. For us, though, we’ve only seen little flattened snakes. Or pythons at tourist attractions.

13. Rats

One thing that attracts snakes is rats. Although, it would have to be quite a big snake to eat some of the rats we’ve seen! Again, we’ll often spot them as we’re sitting by the street eating. Unfortunately, they don’t look as cute as the rats in Ratatouille. 😉 While they look creepy, at least they don’t try to come near us.

14. “Klong Monsters”

Ok, that’s just their slang name. Really, they’re water monitors, living the canals (“klong”). Basically the crocodiles of Bangkok, these guys can grow to be 3 meters long. They are one natural method of dog population control. I guess they have a reputation of eating puppies. The word for water monitor in Thai has become an insult, and is also considered to bring bad luck. Hence the use of other names like “klong monster.” We haven’t encountered any up close, just close enough to take a picture. I guess they can be nasty if confronted.

One wonderfully absent creature from this list is spiders. We have really seen very few spiders in Bangkok. I’ve heard horror stories about being trapped in a bathroom with a really big one, but thankfully haven’t had any personal experience. Same with centipedes- haven’t seen them, but have heard about huge ones…

What creature really creeps you out?

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