Size: About 1/2"
Color: Silverly light gray and blue
Habitat: Cosmopolitan
Found: North America, Europe, Asia and Australia
Questions & Answers : How to get rid of Silverfishes (18)
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Silverfish Control

Silverfish, also commonly known as carpet sharks or fishmoths, are one of the most commonly found house insect pests in the country. Their fishlike movements and also the silver color when they are fully matured are characteristics that give them their common name, silverfish. Usually, they will most commonly be found in areas that are of high moisture. Often times, they will get stuck in the bathtub or sink and will be found the following morning by homeowners or business owners. Although they are attracted to these areas of high moisture, you will be able to find silverfish in any area of the house. They are found all over the United States.

Identifying Silverfish

Silverfish are wingless insects that are elongated in shape and have a tapered abdomen at the end. Many people will commonly describe their shape as long tear-drops. They are also flattened insects that vary in length from about 13 to 25 mm. They are soft bodied which allows them to move in a squirmy movement. Their fish-like and flexible movements and also their fine scales that are silver when they are fully matured, but usually a brown in color gives them their common name, silverfish. They can also be identified by their cerci. They have three long cerci at the tips of their abdomens. One of the cerci points straight out from the end, one faces towards the left, and the last one faces the right. They also have two long antennae at the front of their heads. The cerci and antennae look very similar in form.

Silverfish Habits

Regarding reproduction, the female silverfish can actually lay up to fifty eggs. Usually, silverfish lay their eggs in dark cracks and crevices along in areas that are of high humidity. It takes at least an entire year for the development of a silverfish and once they reach full maturity, silverfish are able to live up to eight years if all environmental conditions are well fit for their survival. Silverfish undergo a simple metamorphosis which means that they simply molt as they grow and do not actually undergo the different stages of development. The silverfish bug will shed its skin many times throughout its lifetime and the young silverfish will change colors from a dark blackish brown to brown and ultimately to a silver color. A good way to find concentrated areas of infestation is to look for their dead and shed skin.

Although silverfish are not harmful to people and animals as far as health risks are involved, they can be a huge nuisance pest and will cause havoc around the household, mainly due to their almost unlimited diet. Silverfish are known to eat just about anything. Their diets include dead hair and skin, glue, paper, clothing, and will also eat human food supplies.

How to Get Rid of Silverfish

There are several prerequisite steps to use before applications of pesticides are used to treat for silverfish infestations. Clutters of papers and other materials along with clutters of food items should be eliminated. Regularly dust rooms and keep sanitation as a regular maintenance discipline. Clutters of items, stacked boxes and paper, and etc. can support infestations from thriving; therefore, it is important to get rid of these materials. Also, relative humidity should be kept at a minimum. Silverfish are attracted to dark areas that are high in moisture and humidity. Also, practice exclusion to get rid of silverfish inside your house. If you are able to find their entrance location and their preferred area of the house where they thrive, treat and enclose these areas. Seal all cracks and crevices as well as all potential entry points.

Chemical control involves using poison baits in the form of a place pack as well as a residual spray. Springtails lay eggs in cracks and crevices in basements, under bathroom fixtures, in wooden cabinets, and around steam or water pipes. Dust insecticides are particularly effective for wall void treatment and areas that are restricted like behind furniture or baseboards, in the crawlspaces, attics, and etc.

Silverfish Bug Control Products

  • Liquid Concentrated Insecticides
    Liquid insecticides (such as Cyonara 9.7) can be used as a perimeter treatment for silverfish.
  • Silverfish Aerosol Sprays
    Residual sprays (such as D-Force HPX) can be used for cracks and crevices along with walls and floor areas.
  • Silverfish Poison Baits
    Poison baits such as Niban, Intice and Dekko Silverfish Paks are designed to attract and poison silverfish. These baits are great add-ons when using other liquid spray insecticides.
  • Powder & Dust Form Insecticides
    Among the many presented below, Delta Dust and Eco Exempt D Dust are recommended for silverfish control due to their residual effect. Dust and powder form insecticides can be used for cracks and crevices.
  • Insect Glue Traps
    Simple as set and forget. Leave an insect glue trap behind and trap your silverfish problems.
  • Silverfish Control Kit
    Use our professionally made control kits assembled specifically for silverfish control.

All product labels must thoroughly be reviewed before the insecticides are applied. Call a Pest Mall technician to receive a better diagnosis and treatment plan at 1-800-788-4142.

Do You Have a Question about this Product? Ask Our Experts!

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Q. silverfish eat plastic ?
Hello.....I am a repeat customer. Have one question please, do SILVERFISH eat plastic, plastic bags, thick plastic bags, plastic containers? Thanks SO VERY MUCH.
A.   Thank you for contacting us with your question. Silverfish are not known to eat plastic at all. They feed on natural substances such as silk, cotton, fabrics, paper (books), etc. The only unusual substance they are known to feed on is glue. We actually do not know of any bugs that consume plastic.
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Q. bifenit 25%
How do I mix this for silvery control ?
A.   You will want to mix 1 oz of Bifen IT to 127 oz of water. This will give you 1 gallon of solution.
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Q. how to kill silverfish bug
Hi, I am having a silverfish problem and I need something that is going to kill them. I have sprayed using that ortho home defense stuff and had an exterminator come out three times in the past month and a half and the silverfish just wont die.
A.   We recommend the products Dekko Silverfish bug Packs and a concentrate insecticide like Lambastar cs. Spray all base boards, window frames, door frames, behind the toilets, under the sinks and etc. We also recommend treating the outside perimeter of the house, also targetting window frames and door frames. Dekko Silverfish Packs do not require any mixing or preparation. They are simply cardboard packs with inserts of Boric Acid. Place them in isolated areas of infestation and the silverfish will eat through the paper and into the boric acid. Switch out packs every 3 months.
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Q. Can you find these silver fish just floating around in the water if so can it becoming from my water supply?
A.   Silverfish are highly attracted to humid and moist areas, which may explain why many households that have a silverfish infestation will find them in the bathroom trapped in the sink or tub. You can place a Dekko silverfish pack behind the toilet and under the sink in the bathroom.
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Q. Silverfish Control
what products would you recommend for silverfish. I have a 2 story house with wood floors throughout. These insects can be found in all areas of the house. I'm thinking something they digest and take back to there nest to kill the rest. The product would have to be hardwood floor safe. I do have an attic and the house sits on a raised foundation. I don't have any children nor pets. any recommendations?
A.   Since silverfish are not scavengers or will not feed on the dead carcasses of other silverfish, secondary kill is not possible with silverfish.

The best product we can really recommend is the Dekko Silverfish Packs.

Each pack is placed in any areas of concentrated silverfish infestations and are replaced every three months
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Q. Silver fish in random places,best solution?
I moved into this house about a year ago and discovered these things! I never had them in my old house. I find them upstairs sometimes in my bathroom, bedroom, and general hallway area. I see a few every now and then but I see more of them as the weather warms up. What's the most effective product I can use in this situation and are there any outdoor items I could use to prevent them from coming in? Thanks!!!!
A.   Indoors, you can use bait called Dekko Silverfish Packs. The packs do not have to be opened. Just place them around isolated areas of infestation and the silverfish will eat through the glue on the side to get to the poison bait. Outdoors, any broad spectrum insecticide like Talstar Pro or Suspend will kill silverfish on contact. You should apply insecticide as a barrier perimeter treatment.
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Q. silverfish??
I recently found some bugs on my wall. They looked like tiny tiny magets. they were also in a triangle formation stuck on the wall. they crawled when blown. They looked like a grey line with a black dot as a head. Can you please tell me what they are?
A.   I don't think those are silverfish. Silverfish have a distinct tear drop shape with three appendages that come out from the end of their bodies. Unfortunately, it is difficult for us to identify the pest without seeing what it is first. You can email us at with a picture so that we can try to identify it for you or you can take a sample to a local pest control company. Samples can be collected by sticking a piece of tape on the insect and placing it in a zip-lock-bag.
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Q. Pets and silver fish extermination products
I have silver fish and dogs. What products can I use that are safe for the dogs but kill the silver fish? Thanks.
A.   The only product we carry that can be sent internationally is the Dekko Silverfish Packs. These place packs must be placed in areas that the dog cannot reach. If you have any further questions or comments, please feel free to contact us again.
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Q. how to kill silverfish
I have silverfish/firebrats in my apartment.I need help.

Usually signs of silverfish or firebrats could indicate a moisture problem, so you may want to do a thorough inspection to make sure there is no leakage anywhere.

Depending on where you are finding the silverfish or firebrats, recommended chemicals for treatment may vary. Most common places that silverfish and firebrats are found are in the bathroom area.

For indoor spot treatment in those areas we highly recommend Alpine Pressurized Insecticide Spray.

You may also want to do a outdoor perimeter treatment to keep future ones from foraging indoors.

For outdoor treatment a liquid concentrated insecticide such as Masterline Bifenthrin 7.9 is recommended over aerosol insecticides.

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Q. Silverfish in the house
it's those awful silverfish! I've tried the Dekko paper help at all. They are all over the house! Bedroom, closets, cabinets, kitchen drawers, bathrooms. Not a day goes by that we don't see one. Thanks for your help!

We are sorry to hear of your silverfish infestation. Dekko silver fish packs are most effective when placed inside of drawers or closets. But it seems that you are quite heavily infested with the silver fish.

Therefore I recommend that you use an aerosol spray such as Cy-Kick aerosol.

It has a one month residual time and you can use this aerosol spray to treat cracks and crevice areas along the walls or along pipes in the bathroom and any other place where you see their presence.

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It does not work. Put 25lbs on yard in Feb 2016 it was questionable due to winter. purchased 2 additional bags in Apr. 2016 applied May 2 it rained so I applied additional bag a week later. Still have fleas. Yes Both times the dogs were bathed and the house sprayed. My dogs do not go outside areas that were treated. I called to get more info and about warranty and was told they don't warranty any of they products. They just tried to sell me something else as they did when I purchased this product.

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