If you have ever seen a silverfish, then you know they are rather scary-looking insects. However, silverfish don't bite humans, but they may be harmful insects to personal items like clothing, books, food, and wallpaper.

Are Silverfish Harmful?

A closer look on what a silverfish look like

Lepisma saccharina is the order of species of insects of which the silverfish is a part. Entomologists say they belong to an insect species dating millions of years ago.

They don't carry any disease, but some people develop respiratory issues, including rhinitis and nose inflammations.

As the silverfish matures, they start the process of molting. During this process, they shed their scales. As their scales and eggs are shedding, they drop on the floor, creating dust some people are allergic to.

Although silverfish do not bite and are not physically harmful, they are far from innocent. Don't let their tiny, oblong, silver-hued bodies with long antennae get you wrong. They might appear like they can't do any harm, but they will ruin some of your favorite household items.

Silverfish will eat anything and everything they find--even your drapes and upholstery, if allowed! But these insects aren't likely to bite a human.

Can a Silverfish Crawl into My Ear?

Rumor has it silverfish crawl inside your ear, chow down brains, and then lay their eggs in the person ear canal. Fortunately, this is merely an old wive's tale! In reality, silverfish are shy when it comes to humans and try to avoid coming in contact with them.

Are Silverfish Harmful to Pets?

Even though they look scary, Fido or Felix will not be poisoned if your pet should ingest one. However, try to avert your fur baby from eating silverfish if possible. The silverfish is more of a nuisance insect than a real danger to people or pets.

Primary Conditions of the Silverfish

Some additional primary facets one should be aware of regarding the silverfish are:

  • These insects are extremely small, typically between 12 to 19 mm long.
  • A silverfish has six legs.
  • Silverfish are normally brown, white, silver, or a blend of the three colors.
  • They prefer living in regions where there is lots of humidity and are most active at night.

Do Silverfish Bite?

A silverfish damages to the pages of a book

Because silverfish have extremely weak jaws, scientists feel that silverfish bite cannot give harmful bite to humans. Their jaws are not able to penetrate through the skin of humans.

Silverfish are able to bite into their food. However, due to their weak jaws, it is more similar to a scrape or long drag. It is in this manner that the silverfish eat and are able to do damage to your property.

They scrape their teeth along items such as fabric, wallpaper, books, and other items made from paper. Leaving a yellow residue, their fecal matter, behind.

What is a Sign You Have Silverfish?

If you see yellow markings of paper and fabric damaged inside your house, this is a clue you have silverfish.

As silverfish age, they leave their skin behind; this is the process called molting. These discarded skins attract and collect dust which causes some to have allergic reactions.

Silverfish have been known to create issues in breathing due to allergic reactions in certain people. However, these silverfish don't often bite humans and are not known to spread any harmful or dangerous diseases or pathogens.

What is Attractive to Silverfish?

Cellulose is the primary attractant of silverfish. They love to feed on products containing lots of starchy sugars. For instance, paper and cardboard are prime examples of something they prefer to eat.

Silverfish are able to live for many years without eating and reproduce rather rapidly. Therefore, it does not take long for a few silverfish to create an infestation and start wreaking havoc on your stuff.

How Can I Prevent a Silverfish Infestation?

Getting rid of silverfish once they have made a home inside your house can be daunting. They are accomplished at hiding due to their flat bodies, and they move rapidly. It is even more difficult because they are nocturnal pests, making it difficult to find them.

Steps to Help Eliminate Silverfish

Try these tips to make your home less inviting to these creepy, fish-like pests.

  • Store all dry food supplies in airtight storage. Silverfish love grains, cereals, beans, pasta, and dry pet foods. Limiting their food sources will make your home less attractive to them.
  • Make sure to sweep or vacuum floors and upholstery to ensure the removal of any crumbs of food.
  • Use a dehumidifier in dark areas of your home with extreme moisture, such as the basement. Silverfish are attracted to dampness and moisture.
  • Crawl spaces or basements, with dirt floors covered with a plastic lining.
  • Install all ridge vents correctly to allow excess humidity an exit out.
  • Keep the gutters cleaned around your home to ensure all water drains away from the house.
  • Make sure the outside of your home has all cracks and crevices caulked, and it is painted.
  • Seal all areas that are open, like the seams between ceilings and walls and any baseboard cracks, as well as the trim and windows.

How To Get Rid of a Silverfish Infestation

Getting rid of a silverfish infestation

If you have just a few silverfish, you want methods to get rid of them. You are probably looking for methods of pest control that are available to make them go away for good.

Complete silverfish control over these pests can prove difficult. Mold develops on moist wood, which is a delicacy to silverfish, thus attracting these pests.

In addition, shingles have lots of places for these tiny fish-like insects to hide, making reaching them more challenging.

Often, the best method or treatment is calling a professional pest company like A.N.T. Pest Control to eliminate silverfish.

How Do You Identify a Silverfish

A silverfish has a body ranging from one-half to one inch long; it is flat, long, and lean. Their color is the most distinguishable silverfish feature: light gray to blue. However, when this pest moves rapidly in a fish-like way, it appears to be a shiny silver color.

What Do Silverfish Eat?

Silverfish are able to live a long time without food; in fact, well over one year! Yet, they make that place home when they find a source to eat.

Silverfish are able to eat just about anything. Nothing is safe from their appetites!

Of course, a favored cuisine is paper products, but they also eat the glue that binds books. They are also rather fond of the foods we eat, such as flour and oats.

Not only do silverfish feed on carbs, but their preference is protein. Unfortunately, a good source to rid of silverfish for protein comes from old photographs. Ensure you place all old photos into plastic, sealed containers.

Ways I Can Get Rid of a Silverfish Infestation

Seeing one of these bugs should not be taken lightly. That seemingly innocent silverfish might have just laid her eggs somewhere dangerous.

Once an insect like the silverfish finds food supplies, they plan to make that place home. Here are some methods for making your home less attractive to these bugs:

  • Keep debris outside cleared away from buildings and avert standing water in gutters.
  • The use of a dehumidifier will lower humidity levels indoors.
  • Food and clothing should be stored in airtight containers.
  • Sweep and vacuum the floor and furniture regularly.
  • Inspect the doors and walls for points of entry. Caulking any cracks and crevices you might find.
  • If possible, avoid storing belongings in cardboard boxes.

When it's Time to Call the Professional Pest Experts

When you have done everything a person can to remove these bugs, it is time to call an expert service. The professionals at A.N.T. Pest Control know what the best treatment to use on bugs is.

Call us today, and we will get rid of silverfish in house, whether dangerous to a person or not. Start living your life free of insect pests; call A.N.T. Pest Control today!

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New Lenox, IL 60451


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