Why Are There Silverfish In My Maryland Home?


close up  of silverfish on paper

For many homeowners, silverfish are the least of their concerns. They might appear every now and then, but don’t seem to cause much noticeable harm. But believe it or not, these strange bugs can cause trouble around the house if they aren’t taken seriously. Having silverfish in your Maryland home can be bad news, but you can resolve the problem with the right approach.

What Are Silverfish?

As far as pests go, silverfish are pretty unmistakable. They are directly descended from the most primitive insects in history, and that ancient influence is still evident in their distinct tapered shape. Silverfish are gray or silver in color and typically measure between 1/2 and 3/4 inches long. They have flat bodies that are wider and the top and more narrow towards the end, bearing a strong resemblance to the shape of a fish. Silverfish have two long antennae and three rear appendages stretching out around the perimeter of their bodies.

They might be bizarre in appearance compared to the average ants or house flies, but silverfish are harmless to humans. They are incapable of biting or stinging and aren’t known to cause disease or spread parasites. 

But while they aren’t necessarily a hazard to your health, silverfish are a real threat to your food and belongings. And once silverfish decide to take up residence on your property, they can be surprisingly difficult to get rid of.

How Silverfish Get Indoors

Like most pests, silverfish are attracted to your home because of food, water, and shelter. And thanks to their flat bodies, they can easily squeeze in to take advantage of your hospitality.

Silverfish enter homes through cracks in the foundation, gaps under doors, or even through tears in screens. Damaged door sweeps and weatherstripping can contribute to silverfish getting indoors. But oftentimes, silverfish are brought home unknowingly.

Many homeowners unwittingly introduce silverfish into their homes in boxes and containers. Like cockroaches, silverfish are adept hitchhikers and are likely to hang out in containers stored in humid basements, attics, garages, or warehouses.

The humidity and moisture of basements and attics make a perfect habitat for silverfish, although they can spread throughout the entire home once infestations have reached a significant size. 

How To Prevent Silverfish

Silverfish can destroy valuable clothing and paper documents and can even infest your pantry if you’re not careful. Preventing silverfish is easy with some adjustments around the home. You can prevent silverfish in your Maryland home by:

  • Closing entrances. Keep silverfish out by inspecting the exterior of your property for any cracks or gaps and sealing with silicone caulk. Take a look at your weather stripping and door sweeps and replace as needed. Repair or replace torn window screens.

  • Inspect boxes and containers. Try to avoid bringing boxes kept in humid basements into your home. Inspect any containers stored in silverfish-prone areas for bugs before bringing them indoors.

  • Protect your pantry. Store perishable foods in airtight containers. Plastic containers with locking lids work well, but glass and metal containers also offer protection from household rodents.

  • Clean the kitchen. Silverfish are eager to gobble up any crumbs you may have missed on the kitchen floor. Sweep, mop, and vacuum often and wipe down countertops after cooking or eating. 

  • Clean the yard. Wet leaves, rotten logs, and other organic waste attract silverfish. Get rid of any yard waste accumulating on your property.

If silverfish are a problem in your Maryland home, get in touch with the experts at American Pest for more advice or assistance. Our affordable and comprehensive residential pest control plans are designed to get rid of unwanted critters like silverfish for good and prevent future infestations. For more information about how we can help you, contact us today.


Other Services Available


Contact Me About Pest Control

Fill out the form and recieve feedback in less than 5 minutes. For immediate service please call.