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Silverfish are nocturnal and avoid light so they often go unnoticed until there are sufficient numbers to consider them a problem.
Their scientific name ‘lepisma saccharine’ comes from the silverfish’s main diet – of sugar or starches
Silverfish are generally around 13-25mm in length and they taper at the end, like a fish (although they are insects with no relation to a fish other than their appearance and the way that they move – hence their name).
Typically live between two and eight years, with a female Silverfish laying around 100 eggs in her lifetime.
Silverfish are wingless so cannot fly, but they are agile runners – outrunning most of their predators (spiders, centipedes, earwigs etc), but they cannot climb at all.
They live in moist areas, preferring humid situations. In our homes they can be found in baths, sinks, showers and kitchens – areas that are moist and can provide a food source are favoured. However, Silverfish can live for a year or more with no food.
They can cause damage to the materials they like to eat such as adhesives, coffee, glue, hair, paper, photos and sugar – hence why they like sinks, showers and baths so much!
They do not pass the disease on to humans but it can be disconcerting knowing you are sharing your bathing, cleaning or cooking area with this speedy night-time insect.