If you’ve ever had a silverfish scurry across your floor, you may well know the shiver that creeped down your spine. These disturbing creatures can be unnerving to find in your home or on your property with their quick movement and long antennae. Silverfish are common in many homes, but an infestation can result in damage and overall unease. These nocturnal creatures are great at hiding, which means if you’ve spotted one or two you may already have a serious problem. Let’s take a look at what they are, how they behave and how to handle an infestation.
What are silverfish?
Silverfish are small insects with flat, slender bodies. These primitive, wingless creatures measure around ½ an inch to an inch in length and are grey, blue in color with a shimmery aesthetic. They are nocturnal and move in a wiggling manner that resembles a fish. A female silverfish lays about 100 eggs in her lifetime, 60 of which can be at one time. The eggs will be laid in dark crevices where they’ll nest from two weeks up to two months before they hatch. It can take three months to three years for juvenile silverfish to become adults. Silverfish thrive on carbs like sugar and starch. Their food sources include cellulose, silk, dead insects, glue, linen, and books.
Silverfish and Your Home
You’ll typically find silverfish in moist places like basements, bathrooms, and laundry rooms as they thrive in dark, wet conditions. However, they’re drawn to any place that holds moisture and provides hiding places. These creepy insects can also thrive outdoors as long as it’s humid and there’s moisture. Any place that breeds moisture on your property is an excellent place for silverfish to reside. Outside of the home you may find them in leaf piles, heavy weeds, mulch, leaky spigots or broken gutters, under rocks, and more. If they’re outside, they can just as easily transfer to the interior of your home where moisture is present. Silverfish find ways into your home through cracks, gaps, or holes in exterior walls. They can also take up residence in garages where food sources like paper products are stored.
Since silverfish feed on cellulose and glue, they can feast on your wallpaper, clothing, and more. Once an infestation is established, you may notice these types of things become shredded. That’s where silverfish are feeding and breeding.
Silverfish are mostly nocturnal and can move quickly from one place to another. Since they’re secretive by nature, they can breed rapidly and an infestation can take hold quickly. In fact, an infestation can cause a lot of damage before you even know it’s a problem. They can breed quickly and their feeding habits can be very damaging.
How to Fight Silverfish
As with any pest problem, prevention is the most ideal course of action. Since silverfish love moisture, removing it from your home and property is key in preventing an infestation. Open vents and crawl spaces should be lined with caulk. Reduce humidity and moisture in typically wet places indoors as well. Keeping a tidy home that’s clean of debris and clutter can help in the prevention of a silverfish infestation since they feed on a variety of materials.
As silverfish are elusive, preventing them and handling an infestation are best left to the professionals. AAI Pest Control offers a multi-step process to target and address silverfish infestations. If you’ve noticed a few in your home, you need to get in touch with our pest experts right away. Getting a handle on the population quickly is crucial to ensuring your peace of mind. If you’re dealing with silverfish, or any kind of pest problem, contact us today to find out more about our services. We’ve been serving the community for more than 30 years and know how to handle a variety of pests in homes and businesses.