Are There Silverfish in Florida?

Florida is one of many American states that silverfish call home. These small silver insects love humid environments, making Florida a favorite destination.

Silverfish appearance

Silverfish don’t have wings, don’t jump, can’t hear, and can see only light or dark, but they compensate by running quickly on their six legs. Minus their tail, adult silverfish are about one-half to an inch long. Their flat, oval, and segmented bodies are covered in shiny silver or brown scales and are shaped like a body of a fish, hence their name.

Their small, compound eyes are widely separated. Immature silverfish molt three or four times before their scales appear. Adult silverfish continue to molt up to 60 times within their life, which spans several years. While molting, silverfish are defenseless, and it’s not uncommon for one silverfish to eat any molting silverfish it finds.

Silverfish habitats

Silverfish seek cool, damp, indoor locations, like basements, garages, attics, laundry rooms, bathrooms, and any area with books or boxes. In these dark and undisturbed areas, they come out at night to eat fabric, dandruff, sawdust, flour, cereals, dead insects, house dust, and even some kinds of fungi. Their favorite snack is starch, and they often eat the starch from book-binding glue and wallpaper paste.

Potential damage from silverfish

Silverfish can devastate Floridian homes. They love to carb load, munching on the flour and cereal they find in kitchens. The cost of replacing damaged or bug ridden cooking and baking ingredients adds up quickly. They can also destroy books by eating their binding and leaving ragged edges. When silverfish eat wallpaper paste, they leave unsightly marks that are expensive to repair.

They even eat fabric, especially linens, leaving feeding marks and yellowish stains on sheets, curtains, and more.

Silverfish don’t carry pathogens that cause disease, but their shed skin is a concern for allergy sufferers.

Silverfish signs

Silverfish themselves often make appearances in sinks, bathtubs, and light fixtures.

Here are some signs silverfish have slivered into your home:

  • Feeding marks on books and wallpaper
  • Small black pepper-like pellet droppings
  • Irregular notches on book spines

Silverfish prevention

Since silverfish thrive in humid temperatures, Floridians must take extra care to keep them out of their homes.

  • Repair leaks, use dehumidifiers, and keep water drains away from your home. Reducing moisture is an important part of preventing a silverfish infestation.
  • Put food like sugar, cereal, and coffee in sealed containers.
  • Make it impossible for silverfish to get into your home. Seal holes and cracks around windows, doors, and baseboards.

Living in Florida doesn’t have to mean you have to live with silverfish. Hometown’s trained professionals can get these slimy insects out of your home for good. Contact us today to request a free quote.