What is a Silverfish Bug?The Silverfish Bug, also known as Lepisma saccharina, is a small insect without wings. Its name, silverfish, comes from its silvery color and the fact that is resembles a fish. Silverfish's mostly rely on carbohydrates to survive that come from various natural sugars and starches. In urban environments, they will eat glue, paper of any kind including books, sugar, coffee and even clothing, making them quite a pest when they are able to make their way into homes.
They are nocturnal, and typically can be anywhere from thirteen to twenty five millimeters in length, with most of their length coming from their abdomen. Silverfish have two antennae at their end of their abdomens, and have eyes at the front of their body, despite the fact that other members of the Thysanura family are known for not having eyes.
Silverfish do not have traditional lings, and instead they have an antenna that they move around in a motion that resembles the way a fish swims through water, providing another reason why they are commonly referred to by their nickname.
Silverfish bugs are found throughout the world including parts of North America, Australia, Asia and Europe. They are also found on a number of Pacific islands. They are mostly limited to areas with quite a bit of moisture, as they require humidity upwards of 75%. Although they are not commonly found in urban areas, they have been known to inhabit areas of the home where moisture is found including kitchens, garages, closets and bathrooms. They can be quite a nuisance when they infest your home because they are able to rapidly reproduce and multiply, which creates larger infestations in urban areas that provide the right environment for them to live.
The reproductive cycle of the silverfish is very unique and at times can last as long as one full hour. The male and female bugs start by standing face to face and rubbing their antennae's together. The male will back away, and then return to this same position repeatedly throughout the ordeal. The female will often chase the male as he backs away. Before mating, the two bugs will stand alongside each other, and will rub their antennae's more. The male will then release his spermatophore, which is a sperm capsule, and the female will intake the spermatophore into her own body, fertilizing the egg. Their mating ritual is completely unique and is not replicated in any other species related to the silverfish.
Silverfish are considered to be among the most damaging of pests because of their ability to rapidly multiply and destroy property. In urban environments, they will continually feast upon whatever sugars and starches that they can find in the home, and are quick to move around the house in search of food when they are unable to locate food in their present area. One silverfish may have as many as sixty six offspring over the course of their lifetime.