How To Kill A Silverfish In Your Kitchen

Silverfish; The Good, The Bad And The Ugly

Sometimes silver fish are good.

You walk into the home of a friend and see a large aquarium in the corner. Soft light filters through the water onto the colorful stones and castles and various plants. Then there is a flash of silver. Lots of flashes. See, your friend is an avid aquarist and he has discovered the beauty of the Silver Dollar fish. He has several of these oval fish swimming together in a “school,” and they are quite pretty.

Sometimes silverfish are bad.

You walk into the bathroom in your friend’s house and see a large jetted tub in the corner. Soft light filters in through the stained glass windows and plays upon the beautiful bathroom fixtures. But then you see a silverfish, two silverfish, three! They are coming out from underneath the tub. Startled, you quickly turn on your heel and get out of there as fast as you can. Did your friend’s beautiful aquarium fish somehow escape to the bathroom? No, these are a different kind of silverfish altogether.

Facts about silverfish:

These silverfish are not actually fish at all. They are a wingless insect that is silver in color and about ¾ of an inch long. They are thick at the front and have tapering bodies that are shaped like a teardrop.

Silverfish are capable of scaling walls and ceilings, so it is possible for them to drop on you.

Is it possible to prevent silverfish from invading?

Keeping your house free of food particles may help in keeping silverfish at bay.

Drying out your house by using fans and dehumidifier will also deter silverfish from staying since they thrive in moist environments.Repairing any leaky pipes, sinks, toilets or tubs will also remove sources of moisture that attract silverfish.

The professionals here at American Pest enjoy a beautiful aquarium filled with lovely silver colored fish just as much as anyone. But, if you have the kind of silverfish that are ugly and make people run out of your bathroom in disgust, we can help! With the latest up-to-date knowledge and equipment, and the 2015 Angie’s List Super Service Award, you can rest assured that American Pest can take care of silverfish, or any other household pest you may be dealing with in.



It’s frustrating to try to get rid of silverfish when you can barely see them scurrying across your floor. Silverfish are fast runners that often live in the damp, cool places of your home. They feed on almost anything; these scavengers will even eat wallpaper glue and book bindings. You can fight silverfish with a thorough home cleaning and the right products.

Wipe Out These Top Silverfish Hiding Places

Keep kitchen floors, counters, and cupboards clean. Pay special attention to cracks where the baseboard meets the floor.

Wipe down bookcases, closet shelves, and door or window frames

Vacuum behind the oven, microwave, toaster, and refrigerator

De-clutter the areas where you see them

They are often brought indoors with cardboard packing, furniture, and construction materials so inspect these items before they come inside.

Try running a dehumidifier to make the area less humid, and therefore, less appealing.

Keep Silverfish from Hiding in your Home

In warm climates, silverfish can live outdoors. De-clutter outdoor areas to remove hiding places close to your home (debris, stones, piles of wood, looks bark, or mulch)

Seal any foundation or exterior cracks

Use a barrier product like Raid Max® Bug Barrier to keep silverfish out

Expert Tips

Telltale Signs of Infestation

Silverfish are so fast, sometimes you just can’t spot them. Signs of infestation include yellow stains, especially on linens or book pages, and irregular feeding marks that look like etchings on surfaces.

Debugged! How to Get Rid of Silverfish—and What’s Attracting Them in the First Place

Prepare yourself: If you’ve been noticing some creepy, silvery bugs crawling around your home lately, you might just have a silverfish infestation.

Silverfish are nothing new—in fact they’re some of the oldest insects around, predating dinosaurs by about 100 million years. This means you wouldn’t be the first person to feel more than a little disturbed at the sight of them sleuthing around your kitchen in the middle of the night (yeah, they’re also nocturnal)

Fortunately, by now we know more than a few things about these ancient creepy-crawlies, including what they’re attracted to—and how to get rid of them

What are silverfish?

“Silverfish are grayish, wingless insects found all over the United States and many other parts of the world,” says Scot Hodges, vice president of technical services for Arrow Exterminators. “They have elongated, slender bodies that are wider at the head, silvery-gray in color, and covered with tiny scales.”

What attracts silverfish?

“They’re attracted to high humidity, so they like dark spaces like attics, crawl spaces, and humid bathrooms,” says Mike Rottler, owner of Rottler Pest & Lawn Solutions


Although most silverfish live outdoors, they readily can be found in homes. Silverfish prefer places with high moisture, such as basements, bathrooms, laundry rooms and kitchens. Silverfish are known as nuisance pests because they do not bite humans or pets but cause damage to household items, like clothing and books.

Silverfish are difficult to exterminate because they move around at night. Most of the time, homeowners don’t know they are in the home until they notice the damage causing by silverfish feeding.

Instead of choosing chemical controls that contain toxic and harmful substances, you can choose controls to eliminate the silverfish pests in your home.

So…What’s a Silverfish?

What are silverfish? They are silvery, but they are definitely not fish. They are insects that have silvery, overlapping scales that tend to easily rub off. They come inside searching for food and find any minute food particle left lying around your home. Silverfish don’t stink or bring germs inside your home.

Silverfish may come into your home when you bring boxes inside that were stored in an infested area. They may also come into your home in search of moisture during hot, dry summers. Silverfish can enter your home through cracks or holes.


If you have silverfish, there are a lot of reasons to want them out of your home. These are some pretty creepy looking bugs, and not a fun insect to see wiggling across the floor of your bathroom. But should you be worried? Are silverfish dangerous? Will they spread illness? Do they bite? The answers to these questions may surprise you–so will the real reason you should be worried. Let’s take a look.

Do silverfish bite? Yes. But they aren’t going to bite you–well, they may nibble on your eyelashes a bit, but other than that, you have nothing to worry about. Silverfish don’t bite humans; and even if they did, they don’t have any dangerous venom inside their bodies.

Are silverfish dangerous? Yes. Not to you, but definitely to your belongings. These insects eat all sorts of things you would probably rather not have them eat. They chew on old photos, important documents, your favorite books, that wallpaper you love in the living room, your best shirt, and other fabrics. Silverfish are drawn to starches, and they can find these starches in a wide variety of places, including your pantry.

Do silverfish spread illness? This is not a pest that is connected to the spread of disease in a home, but like all insect invaders, they can go from feeding on something in your dirty trash to eating something on your counter. It is unlikely, however, that silverfish will cause any real illness in your home.

So, if you don’t like silverfish crawling through your hair looking for dandruff and nibbling on your eyelashes, you might have something to worry about. If you don’t want them putting holes in your belongings, there is definitely something to worry about. But the real reason you should be worried about silverfish is why they are in your house in the first place.