Silverfish

Lepisma Saccharina may sound like some new kind of artificial sweetener, but it’s really the name entomologists give to the silverfish – which are neither silver (they tend to range in color from white to bluish-gray) nor fish (they’re definitely an insect). Silverfish are difficult to see in detail without a magnifying glass because they’re less than an inch long, but they resemble a catfish. Instead of fins however, they have six legs as well as pinchers, technically known as cerci, sticking out of their behinds.

Silverfish Control

Although they’re not swimmers, silverfish are nocturnal creatures that prefer dark, moist areas. Here in Arizona, pest control professionals most often find them in outdoor expansion joints, meter boxes, under leaf litter being watered by drip systems, under foundations that abut to landscaping, basements, and bathrooms – anywhere there is moisture.

Incidentally, the word “saccharina” in the silverfish’s scientific name does actually refer to sugar. More accurately, it describes their diet, which consists entirely of complex sugars and carbohydrates.

Cause

As is so often the case, silverfish are after nourishment. While silverfish are not a danger to your health, they can damage some types of personal property. Because they thrive on complex sugars, it should come as no surprise that they can feast on glue, paper, family photos, books, curtains, cotton and linen, silk fabric and more. When they can’t find anything else, they’ll even chomp down on leather and polyester.

These creatures are also amazingly tough. Even if you deprive them of nourishment, silverfish can survive for more than a year without food. It’s why the Phoenix pest control professionals at Blue Sky have studied these insects and have developed the most effective strategies for dealing with them.

Treatment

Because silverfish most often hide in cracks and crevices, getting rid of them requires precision treatments. All of Blue Sky’s general pest control service plans target the small, hard-to-reach areas where silverfish make their home. We also have equipment specifically designed to effectively treat these hard-to-reach areas.

As Arizona pest control experts, we select products that are effective in controlling silverfish. All of the products we use are people friendly, pet friendly and environment friendly. We may also use glue boards (also known as sticky traps) in places where silverfish are likely to be as another method for control.

Prevention

Keep in mind that silverfish seek several things: water, food and shelter, which they normally find in dark, damp spaces. The best way to prevent any pest infestation is to deny them water, food and shelter. Repair any leaky faucets, especially those in basements or near foundations. Do not overwater landscaping and keep landscaping trimmed back properly and pick-up any leaf litter. Also make sure to repair damaged, worn or missing weather stripping around doors.

One thing to remember is that silverfish are nocturnal. Vacuuming out nooks and crannies where these insects hide during the day can help get rid of them as well as their eggs. Cleaning floors and baseboards with soap and water can help to get rid of potential food sources. Our Phoenix pest control professionals can assist you in identifying conditions at your home that can be addressed to reduce the nesting and harborage areas for silverfish.


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Further Reading

Silverfish and Firebrats: A Tale of Two Pests: Similarities between Silverfish and Firebrats.

How to Deal With Silverfish: Tips for dealing with Silverfish.

Top 5 Areas You Should Clean Up To Avoid Silverfish Infestations: Keep Silverfish out of your home.