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Lespisma sacchrina (Linnaeus)

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    Learn More About Silverfish

    What are Silverfish?

    Silverfish get their name from the insect’s silvery, metallic appearance and fish-like shape and movements. Silverfish are also known as “bristletails” because of their three long, bristle-like or tail-like appendages on the rear end of their body. They are typically seen in moist, humid areas in the home, such as bathrooms, basements, crawl spaces and attics. They tend to hide their presence from humans, which means any damage they have caused could go unnoticed as well.

    A damp and humid crawl space can lead to infestations from pests, including silverfish, and PMi does offer crawl space inspections and can determine if your home is suffering any type of infestation or fungal/mold growth.


    Pest Stats

    • Color: Silver to brown
    • Legs: 6
    • Shape: Oval, elongated
    • Size: ¾ inches
    • Antennae: Yes

    “I called Pest Management Systems, Inc. requesting information about pest services concerning a particular insect I was seeing in my rental property. The receptionist was very knowledgeable concerning the insect with regards to how they breed and their season for egg hatching. She also advised me of alternative approaches to handle the situation. I really appreciate the fact that Pest Management Systems, Inc. did not attempt to sell a service that probably would not have provided the results I wished (like other popular pest control companies in my area attempted to do). I will definitely consider Pest Management Systems, Inc. in the near future. ”

    Harold, Verified Google Review

    What Do Silverfish Look Like?

    These pests have no wings but can move very fast. Adults have a body length of about ½-3/4” (12-19 mm) not including the tail. They have a flattened body and their shape is often compared to a teardrop, carrot or fish, tapering from head to rear and generally covered with microscopic scales. Silverfish are typically silvery or gun metal in color and have long, thread-like antennae. Immature silverfish look identical to adults, but are smaller in size.


    Signs of a Silverfish Infestation

    Keep an eye out for feeding marks, although they may be irregular whether they are holes, notches along an edge, or surface etchings. Yellow stains, scales and/or feces (tiny black pepper-like pellets) may also be seen on infested materials.

    People have noticed these pests when they come down on ceiling soffits and/or drop from skylights and canister light fixtures in the ceiling, likely entering through shake roofs.

    A Silverfish feeding on paper

    Silverfish Prevention

    The key to silverfish control is thoroughly inspecting preferred habitat areas, damp or wet areas, and materials that may serve as a food source. If the infestation is localized on the inside, one can assume that it is recent and was either brought in via infested items or represents a recent invasion from the outside. If the infestation is widespread, then attention should be directed to the outside. Anything stored against or near the house’s exterior must be moved or removed since silverfish can easily climb up walls and find entrance around window and door frames, utility pipes and vents. Shake roofs should also be cleaned and sealed every other year.

    One of the best ways to prevent Silverfish infestations is to make sure that your crawl space is properly maintained and free of major moisture. PMi offers full moisture control services, including closed or encapsulated crawl spaces which offer energy savings and takes away the optimal conditions for silverfish.

    If a silverfish infestation is suspected or found, call PMi. We can treat and prevent them from coming back.


    Silverfish are found throughout the U.S. and are typically seen in moist, humid areas in the home, such as bathrooms, basements, crawl spaces and attics.


    Silverfish are mainly a nuisance pest. Indoors, they can cause property damage by chewing holes in clothing, upholstery and paper goods, such as wallpaper and books. It is important to get rid of silverfish if you are dealing with an infestation before they have a chance to increase in population and cause significant damage.



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