Silverfish Eat Books: Huh?

See the prehistoric Silverfish eating his meal...Your books maybe


Silverfish are creatures of the past. Silverfish are paper eating insects like fire-brats. Silverfish about a half inch long or so, are considered primitive and even look the part. Silverfish have a mean armored scale look...but the silverfish to run away.

Or should we say...wriggle away.

Silverfish are creatures of the night that actually hide during the day. Silverfish like damp dark places like basements and crawl spaces...and inside your books where it is dark and there is a lot of paper to eat and become a bigger silverfish.

And why is the silverfish a pest? And how do I get rid of silverfish?

Good questions. Silverfish are a pest because of what they eat.

Silverfish eat paper.

Silverfish eat your books.

In fact silverfish eat volumes of books.

And...silverfish eat your wallpaper, that is the glue. And they eat photographs. Just about whatever you have in your library.

Silverfish, just like fire-brats and termites and white ants eat organic materials also. The latter burrow from the shelf right through volumes of books and back into the shelf again. And guess what.

Your book bindings and your wall paper use organic glue (made of flour and water), just like the starch in your clothes...which they also eat. Many a museum or library or collection of rare books have been destroyed by silverfish infestations.

So how do you get rid of silverfish?

Just do what the museums and libraries do to get rid of their silverfish. Museums, libraries, and other archival collectors put into practice these things below to control the silverfish bugs and protect their collections of books in the library as well as protect all other organic based artifacts they have.

How to Control Silverfish

  • Old books need to be in a moisture controlled environment. Humidity is a friend of silverfish and promotes silverfish infestations.
  • Scattering cloves seems to chase them away
  • Scatter pyrethrum powder
  • Fumigate
  • Buy Silverfish traps. Glue traps. Sticky traps. Find them on the internet.