Rove beetles in Thailand – Reddish rash after contact with the insect

I’m writing this post because I myself was exposed to contact with this little beetle at the weekend when I was out fishing.

Rove Beetles

Rove beetles are also called “haemolymfe” or Thai “Dermatitis Paederus”

This small insect is very common in Nothern Thailand and is not much more than 1 cm long. See the article on Wikipedia here.

When you come in contact with the beetle it leaves tracks on the skin and it feels really hot. I therefore thought at first that the sun that had been too hot in the middle of the day, as it had been sunny.

But as I also had some patches on some places on my face, I went to a pharmacy and spoke with one of the employees. She knew right away that it was this predatory beetle and showed me a picture of it on her phone, as well as pictures of others who had been exposed to the insect.

She told that she often received visits from people who had been exposed to the same thing and that it was very normal at this time of year (read: March / April) in northern Thailand.


I was handed a little cream at the pharmacy that I need to smear on the areas of skin where I had been in contact with the beetle. I needed to do it twice a day.

The cream is called “Fobancort Cream” and costs 99 baht (3 USD).

OBS: strongly recommend that you go to a pharmacy and show them the rash before starting to smear the cream on. The cream contains antibiotics and must therefore only be used sparingly and only if you have this kind of rash.

There is virtually nothing in Danish about this little scamp, so I thought that this post would be useful to find in a search as a Dane, if you are unfortunate enough to get in touch with rove beetles.

See the entire list of the most dangerous animals and insects in Thailand.

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