True to their name, silverfish have metallic silver scales and wiggle like swimming fish as they sprint across floors. Their flat, carrot-shaped bodies measure about 3/4 inch long when mature. Immature silverfish look like adults, only smaller.

Also known as "bristletails," silverfish have three long, tail-like structures to complement two long antennae on their heads. Firebrats, a close relative, look the same except they're mottled brown. Both these pests often seek out moisture in homes during extended dry seasons. Once inside, they can live for many years.


Silverfish hide during daylight and come out at night, so you rarely see them. If you do, it's often in the early morning near a bathroom or kitchen sink drain. When disturbed, silverfish move quickly — a behavior that draws comparisons to cockroaches.

Silverfish are best known for destroying books by feeding on book-binding glue and paper. But they also eat fabrics, wallpaper, cereals and more. Silverfish feed by scraping, leaving scrape marks, irregular holes and excrement between book pages.


Effective silverfish control starts by stopping these pests before they breach your home's walls. Seal all foundation openings where they might gain entry, then protect your home's perimeter. Amdro® brand offers several options to stop silverfish before they get inside:

  • Amdro Quick Kill® Outdoor Insect Killer Concentrate, used with a standard lawn and garden sprayer, works in minutes to kill silverfish by contact. Then it keeps killing these pests for up to three months. Use it to treat your lawn, landscape and foundation plantings. You can even treat your home's foundation up to a maximum height of 3 feet.
  • Amdro® Kills Ants™ & Spiders Granules offer a convenient approach to protecting your home's immediate perimeter. Available in a resealable shaker bag, the fast-acting formula kills silverfish by contact and keeps protecting against these pests for up to two months.
  • Amdro Quick Kill Lawn Insect Killer Granules II, applied with a standard lawn spreader, provides a simple, effective solution for larger lawn and landscape areas. Applied according to directions, the granules kill silverfish by contact within 24 hours and keep working for up to three months.


Overly humid basements and minor plumbing leaks invite silverfish to stick around. Repair plumbing leaks promptly and use dehumidifiers, if needed, to turn the tables back in your favor.

Always read product labels and follow the instructions carefully.
Amdro, Kills Ants and Amdro Quick Kill are trademarks of Central Garden & Pet Company.

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