What are silverfish and why do you have them in your Northern Virginia home?
Silverfish (Lepisma Saccharium) are insects that can invade your home and be a nuisance. They are found all over the United States. Do you have silverfish in your Northern Virginia home? Here are some ways to identify silverfish and what steps you should take to remove them and prevent them.
What do silverfish look like?
Silverfish are silver or brown, metallic, fish-shaped insects. Their bodies are not silver, but rather their scales that they shed and rub off easily are silver. They have six legs, and have three bristle-like tail appendages at the end of their bodies. They are ¾ of an inch long oval-shaped insects with thread-like antennae. They have small compound eyes and can run very fast. They are nocturnal, so it can be difficult to know if you have an infestation of silverfish since they are active when most people are sleeping. There are six different species of silverfish, Bristletail, Common, Four-lined, Gray, Firebrat and Jumping Bristletail silverfish.
Where do silverfish come from?
Silverfish can enter your home much like other insects by clinging to furniture or luggage that is brought into the home from outside. The exact origin of silverfish is unknown because they are found worldwide. However some believe that silverfish are originally from a country with a tropical climate. Silverfish can survive in most any weather but will retreat inside homes as the temperatures begin to drop. They prefer temperatures of between 70 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit and require high humidity environments to ensure their survival.
Where do silverfish live?
Silverfish are found all over the state of Virginia as well as the United States. They are drawn to moist and damp environments that are room temperature or even warm. They tend to live in basements, kitchens, attics and bathrooms. They will often travel far from their dwelling in order to find food. In nature, silverfish live under leaves and rocks because they offer a damp, and warm environment.
What attracts silverfish/What do silverfish eat?
Silverfish are drawn to places that offer them a safe shelter and a consistent food source. Silverfish are opportunistic scavengers and will feed on a variety of nutrients such as dust and debris. They are known for having destructive feeding habits and will eat wallpaper, paper and even clothing. Silverfish eat carbohydrates such as sugar and starches but will also eat cellulose, shampoo, glue from book bindings, linen, silk and dead insects. Although not preferable, silverfish can go weeks without food.
Why do I have silverfish?
Some signs you have silverfish are their feeding marks, yellow stains, scales and small black feces. It is most likely that you have silverfish because you have a food source that is drawing them to your home. Your home may also offer the silverfish a place to hide. If your home is moist or damp and is conducive to silverfish thriving. In a healthy environment, silverfish can live for up to eight years. Silverfish like warm, humid environments, so if your home is warm, it is likely they will be attracted to it.
How to get rid of silverfish in Northern Virginia?
The best way and most effective method for silverfish removal in Fairfax and other parts of Northern Virginia is to hire a pest control company. A pest control company will be able to address the situation and make sure it is properly resolved with the best quality supplies. The way silverfish are gotten rid of is by trapping or the use of chemical repellents or pesticides. There are homemade traps and then there are also manufactured traps and even professional grade traps for silverfish. One thing that is crucial for the removal of silverfish is to control the humidity in your home, since the silverfish like a humid environment. Some ways to reduce the humidity in the home is to shower with the fan on to increase circulation and airflow, open vents in basements and crawl spaces and to install a dehumidifier. Decreasing the humidity won’t always solve the problem, especially if you already have an infestation, but it will definitely help to deter them or even prevent them.
Pest control companies have skilled and trained professionals who understand unique situations and can solve even the toughest pest problem. In addition to having knowledge of pests, they also have access to materials and supplies that others do not. Silverfish infestations can be taken care of both naturally and with chemicals depending on the situation and the home owner’s preferences. At Summit, our pest control technicians are skilled at diagnosing situations and establishing an appropriate treatment plan.
Some ways to prevent silverfish is to get a dehumidifier, and thoroughly inspect the home or habitat. If there are cluttered conditions in a business or home it is suggested it gets organized or discarded. Additionally, it is advised to repair leaks in pipe and drain and seal cracks. Remove moldy and wet wood, and keep food sealed. Homes should be dusted often and baseboards vacuumed. Clothes should be stored in a dry environment. Piles of leaves, brush, wood and dead plants should be removed from near the home. Silverfish infestations happen slowly over time, but it should still be prevented if possible and treated when necessary. Silverfish will stop in areas briefly before darting off to the next location.
If you have a problem with silverfish problem in Fairfax, Alexandria or Arlington, call Summit Pest Control. At Summit, we will provide quality service and get the job done to meet and exceed your needs and expectations. Technicians are thorough during their initial inspection and during the treatment they establish for your property. For more information about silverfish and the removal process, contact us today. If you have any other pest problems that you need addressed, contact us to schedule your free estimate. In addition to pest control we also do animal removal services and home improvement and waterproofing. For more information about any of our services, do not hesitate to call.