Not a very common pest name popping out our homeowners’ complaints, but is a pest that is found in many homes. We could have come across these shiny looking pests at night, usually on the wallpaper, in between books and cardboard. Do you wonder why there are tiny holes in your clothes, despite giving extra care to them? Rentokil shares more on how this could be the work of silverfish infestation and how do you get rid of silverfish in your home.
What is a silverfish?
What is the silverfish pest all about?
They have a distinctive and unique appearance that looks like a fish in terms of shape and its silvery and metallic body colour. They have the capability to move really fast even if not equipped with wings. With its compound eyes presence, this means they are able to have efficient vision in a large range of directions to navigate around.
Their reproduction process takes up to four months to complete, and depending on the species type they can lay a range between three to over twenty eggs a day. The eggs take a duration of twenty to sixty days to complete and hence, you may not notice any presence of silverfish signs until later. This is also a reason why proactive pest detection and inspection is necessary to conduct in a home regularly.
Where can you find silverfish around the home?
Silverfish seeks moisture and humidity and an environment with poor ventilation promotes the possibility of silverfish infestation. Firstly, kitchens and bathrooms where there is a damp condition particularly under sinks, cabinets, windows, door frames, laundry corner and along the bathtub. Secondly, within the living room or dining wall especially with installation of wallpaper and books display. Thirdly, among stash and piles of cartons and storage boxes, newspapers, magazines and cardboard storages. Finally, along crawl spaces, attics and baseboards where it is warm and humid.
Where does silverfish come from?
There are many ways on how silverfish is turning up in your home. Most basic way of entry is through those unfixed cracks, gaps and crevices found on your structure. Cross infestation is another way to invade into a cozy and conducive resting environment such as your home. This happens from your surrounding units or accidental transportation of these pests home. So, why do you get silverfish? What actually attracts them? One of the basic requirements is the readily available food supply that they seek.
What do they feed on?
They have a similar diet to other crawling pests such as cockroaches and ants with preference for carbohydrates, sweets and protein. However, they feed a range of other matters commonly found in the home including:
- Books including the book bind and its glue
- Fungal and mold, largely due to dampness and humidity
- Paper and cardboard such as boxes, packages and newspaper
- Damp and moist clothing that is not sunned properly
- Fabric such as silk, linen and cotton
- Printed materials such as photos and magazine
- Dead insects and other pests
Are they harmful to our health?
On the positive side of dangers and harm to silverfish, they are not biting pests that seek blood meal like the mosquitoes and bed bugs, nor carry disease-causing pathogens. However, one of the frustrating damages they create is destroying and damaging home items around us. This includes the nice wallpaper finishing around the home, the clothing that we like or spend some money on, particularly the precious silk ones or our beautiful photo memories in those photo albums. In addition, there are incidences of triggering allergies through their shed skins and scales generated during the molting process.
How do I know if my home has silverfish infestation?
Silverfish is perhaps less common and unfamiliar to many of us in terms of spotting them and their signs of pest infestation. Rentokil Initial shares how you can spot these early signs early with the following:
- Presence of live or dead silverfish pest itself around the key risk areas in the home
- Look out for feeding marks left by the silverfish
- Physical damages such as holes and etchings on home items
- Find for shed skins and scales that they produce during their molting
- Observe any droppings that are tiny black colour pellets like peppercorn
- Yellow stains or dust looking remains found on the surfaces
Silverfish are nocturnal pests
One of the biggest challenges in dealing with pests is that nocturnal habitual nature that challenges our ability to detect them. There are pests that are active in the daytime such as Aedes Mosquitoes and flies. However, many other pests come out at night besides silverfish to seek food and carry out their harborage activities. This includes rats, cockroaches and bed bugs that makes visibility harder among human eyes. Do not be surprised coming across a silverfish as you turn on the lights heading to the bathroom at night. They like dark environments due to their sensitivity to bright lights and hence, spotting them in the dark becomes another pest eradication challenge.
Silverfish are efficient runners that speeds
They do not swim and glide if you think they behave like fish as their name suggests. Nor do they have wings to help them propel around faster. However, they rely on their efficient mode of speed with six legs to move around or defend from predators. They are known to move as fast, or if not outrun centipedes and spiders, particularly when they run horizontally. While they do not have appendages to allow them to move vertically quickly, they are still able to run up your wall and hide among those painting frames or feed onto the wallpaper.
How do you get rid of silverfish in your home?
Silverfish does not cause detrimental or fatal harm like those of Dengue Fever or Salmonella. However, they still cause health and safety risks among the family and around the home furnishing. Hence, it is crucial not to procrastinate taking up a silverfish control programme to get rid of those silverfish infestations in the home. In addition, there are DIY home pest control that uses natural organic ingredients to repel and deter pests away. For example, using peppermint essential oils that is also used in deterring rats, sprinkling boric acid or diatomaceous earth that is more toxic in self-application and relying on species such as cloves and cinnamon.
Professional pest control services
There are professional and proper processes to deliver pest control around the targeted premises. Firstly, there is a thorough study and assessment around the environment to evaluate the pest condition. Secondly, accurate pest identification is ensured to recommend the right pest eradication. Thirdly, pest control specialists perform regular and consistent monitoring and infestation review. Finally, they will also provide useful pest prevention tips and housekeeping recommendations to keep infestation under control. Find out how much it may cost to engage a pest control service in Singapore.
Useful pest prevention tips
Besides doing silverfish treatment by a pest control company in your home, it is also important to adopt diligent pest preventive activities to complement the treatment. Here are some prevention methods to get rid of silverfish.
- Remove those clutters and piles of cartons and packaging you do not require
- Review if you need to keep those books and magazines lying around
- Store food adequately in air-tight containers and necessary refrigerating
- Adopt diligent housekeeping by removing any food crumbs and residues
- Keep the place well ventilated, by opening windows and fix a ventilator
- Remove the dampness and humidity by using a dehumidifier
- Eliminate all presence of waters along crawl spaces, surfaces and gutters
- Avoid using wallpaper around the home that attracts silverfish
- Seal any cracks, holes, crevices and gaps around the home and caulk wall well
- Engage professional services to eliminate build-up of mold and fungi
- Ensure your laundry and clothes are thoroughly dry and sunned before keeping
Call Rentokil Singapore at 6347 8138 for a pest control solution today.