Silverfish (Lepisma Saccharina)
Silverfish can be recognized by its flat fish-shaped body approximately 12mm in length. A common household pest, the silverfish eats paste from wallpaper, sizing from books and paper, and chews holes in starched and rayon materials. It is common in flourmills and bakeries. Silverfish are active at night and are sometimes found trapped in the bathtub or washbasin in the morning.
Silverfish are completely wingless. They have long antennae, and move in a wiggling motion that resembles the movement of a fish. This, coupled with their appearance and silvery scales, influences their common name. Silverfish typically live for two to eight years. Silverfish are agile runners and can outrun most of their predators (including wandering spiders and centipedes). They also fear the light.
Silverfish are nocturnal and reproduce quickly. The female lays groups of fewer than 60 eggs at once, deposited in small crevices. The eggs are oval-shaped and whitish. When the nymphs hatch, they are whitish in colour, and look like smaller adults. As they moult, young silverfish develop a greyish appearance and a metallic shine, eventually becoming adults after three months to three years.
Silverfish consume starches and adhesives in book bindings, carpets, clothing, some paints, paper and sugar. They also can cause damage to tapestries. They are also attracted to cotton , dead insects linen and silk. These household pests can be destructive in homes or businesses. They are not harmful to humans though they can contaminate food.