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Genus Lepisma

Common Silverfish - Lepisma saccharinum Common Silverfish - Lepisma saccharinum Common Silverfish - Lepisma saccharinum Silverfish & Goldfish - Lepisma saccharinum Silverfish & Goldfish - Lepisma saccharinum Lepisma? - Lepisma saccharinum Species ID request; Silverfish - Lepisma saccharinum Silverfish? - Lepisma saccharinum
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Zygentoma (Silverfish)
Family Lepismatidae
Genus Lepisma
Explanation of Names
Lepisma Linnaeus 1758
A single species in our area(1)
10-12 mm
wingless; body flattened, slender, silvery, gray, or blackish above, and pale below; femora broad and flattened; tip of abdomen with 1 long medial filament and 2 lateral cerci often as long as the medial one, and projecting at right-angles to the body (filaments may be broken or missing); long thread-like antennae with many segments; mandibles articulate at two points; can run quickly but cannot jump
Ctenolepisma lineata has 4 striped down its back; C. longicaudata is uniformly gray; both are significantly larger, too (>15 mm); Thermobia domestica is stouter, yellowish with dark brown bands and mottled spots on the dorsal surface, and normally found in hot places (around furnaces/fireplaces, insulation surrounding hot water and heating pipes
indoors in warm, damp environments such as bathrooms and kitchens, or in damp basements; rarely encountered outdoors
all year indoors; they are active at night, hide during the day, and avoid direct light
crumbs and food scraps, dried meat, cereals, moist wheat flour, glue on book bindings and wallpaper, starch in clothing made of cotton or rayon fabric
Life Cycle
adult female lays eggs continuously (singly or in small groups in cracks and crevices), and may lay over 100 in total; eggs hatch in 3-6 weeks; young are white initially, becoming silver within 4-6 weeks; metamorphosis incomplete; adults continue to molt throughout their life, and may live 2-8 years; they can survive for weeks without food or water
Internet References