Whilst silverfish are renowned for being attracted to warm, moist environments, it appears the nocturnal insects have taken a particular liking to Dublin. Call outs in Dublin for silverfish surged by just under 80% year on year for Rentokil Ireland*. Given the fact that silverfish can lay up to 60 eggs per day, Dublin residents and residents all over Ireland should be particularly aware of the fast populating insect and what to do if you suspect an infestation in your home.
What do small silverfish look like?
- Silverfish are small in size, roughly 10-12mm in length.
- They can vary in colour from silver, blue or grey.
- Their bodies are tapered with a tail-like appearance and two slender antennas.
Why have I got silverfish in my bathroom?
Silverfish tend to move indoors when temperatures drop and are attracted to damp areas. Therefore, it is quite common to find silverfish in bathrooms and kitchens. Silverfish are small insects and can squeeze through even tiny gaps and cracks in foundation, windows and torn screens. Keeping rooms well ventilated and installing an extractor fan will help deter small silverfish from your home.
How to kill silverfish
- Tackle damp – The most effective way to kill silverfish is to remove the damp, moist environments they need to survive in order to discourage them from your property. Tackling all damp and humidity problems is the first step to making your home silverfish free.
- Eliminate food sources – If you want to kill silverfish or prevent an infestation, then eliminating food sources will help to make your home an unsuitable environment. Silverfish feed on starch, cellulose and sugar which can be found in everyday items such as pasta, coffee, books, food debris etc. Keep food in sealed containers and vacuum all carpets.
- Add unpleasant smells – Small silverfish are said to hate the smell of lavender, cinnamon and citrus. Whilst these smells will help deter silverfish from certain areas, this shouldn’t be used as a stand alone measure to kill silverfish.
How to prevent silverfish?
It is always easier to put measures in place to prevent silverfish rather than attempting to kill silverfish after an infestation has begun.
- The first step to preventing silverfish is to keep dust and debris to a minimum using a regular cleaning regime.
- Be sure to focus on cracks, crevices and rarely disturbed areas of your premises such as near skirting boards and under furniture.
- Keep humidity levels below 70% to reduce the risk of condensation damp building up in colder areas.
- Finally, fix any leaks in pipework and improve ventilation in your premises, as this will help to avoid creating the humid conditions which silverfish thrive on.
*Figure generated by Rentokil Pest Control Ireland using call out data taken from the period of November 2021 – January 2022.