Silverfish

scientific name indicator icon
Lepisma saccharina
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1/2" - 3/4"

As annoying as they are in minecraft, silverfish are incredibly difficult to get rid of and incredibly fast - making them quite intimidating to homeowners.

Threat Level
2
Nuisance Score
5

Characteristics

The silverfish is a slender, wingless insect that measures approximately half an inch in length. Its body is a silvery-gray color, and it has a set of long, whip-like antennae. Despite the name, silverfish are not actually fish (sorry fish fans). They received the name from the fact that their silver-scale appearance and “swimming-like” movements make them appear quite fishlike.

Another interesting fact is that silverfish are among some of the oldest insects on the planet, being as old as 400 million years (that’s older than the dinosaurs, by the way)!

Biology

Silverfish are essentially the tiger shark of the insect kingdom (I had to do a fish pun, come on). They're omnivorous, nibbling on diverse items like paper, glue, starch, and even deceased insects. A silverfish's ideal home is one that's moist and humid, and these creatures can enjoy a surprisingly long life span of up to three years!

Silverfish are capable breeders, able to lay up to 100 eggs at a time which only take around 2 weeks to hatch. Silverfish are also great at hiding, combined with their reproductive rate this makes them very difficult to get rid of.

Habitat

The adaptability of silverfish is noteworthy. They don't discriminate between homes, businesses, or even libraries - if the conditions are right, they'll happily move in. Naturally, they have a penchant for warm, humid environments, making your kitchen or bathroom a great habitat for them.

Human Interaction

While silverfish don't pose a serious health hazard, they can be an irksome presence in our living spaces. They've been known to damage paper products and other personal belongings, and their presence may signal a larger pest issue. Silverfish are also known to produce a nasty odor which makes them very unsuitable for homeowners.

While you may not love their taste in diet, these critters are essential players in our ecosystem, helping to break down and recycle different materials.

FAQ

How can I get rid of silverfish?
How do silverfish get into my home?
How do I identify a silverfish?

Pest Control

Should the silverfish situation in your home spiral out of control, it's time to call in pest control professionals. They'll come armed with the experience and the expertise to nip your silverfish problem in the bud, hook - line - and sinker; (okay sorry that was the last fish pun - I’ll stop.)

As for keeping these silver critters at bay, here are some bonus silverfish prevention tips:

  • Maintain cleanliness and reduce clutter.
  • Be cautious with storing paper products in high humidity areas.
  • Regularly inspect your home for signs of silverfish.

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