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Silverfish. Scientific Name

Lepisma saccharina



Only a few species are found indoors and become pests. They prefer dark places and are most active at night. You may find them in various places throughout your house, including attic, basement, wall voids, hollow decorative beams, etc. You'll most often see them trapped in sinks, lavatories and bathtubs because they enter seeking moisture and are unable to climb a slick vertical surface to escape. Silverfish may feed on a variety of materials but seem to prefer materials of plant origin that are high in carbohydrates and protein. Thus, they most often are found feeding on the glue in book bindings or behind wallpaper, on paper, paper sizing, cereal grain products and dried meat. They also may damage silk and some synthetic fabrics. 


Life Cycle

Females may lay over 100 eggs during her lifespan, eggs laid singly or in small clusters in cracks and crevices. Usually takes 4-6 weeks to go from egg to nymph to adult. Molts are continuous throughout their lifespan of 2-3 years. Nymphs appear as small whitish adults about 1/20 inch in size. 



Wingless and soft bodied, silver to brown in color. Body covered by fine scales. Body up to 3/4 inches in length, flattened and elongate-oval shaped, with 3 long tail projections and 2 long antennae. 



Please contact your local county extension office for current information. 

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