By Christian Fischer, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=28984904

Can Silverfish Jump? Can They Fly?

Silverfish have existed for millions of years. They are so old, they were found in fossil form when land animals were discovered. For millennia, these creatures have survived under very harsh conditions. Like the roaches they are commonly confused with, silverfish are serious survivors.

Can Silverfish jump? Can they fly?

They are well known to move around in a manner like a fish swimming.

  • It is actually possible for silverfish to hop and jump, up to two feet vertically!
  • Climbing is also easy for them unless the surfaces are slick or slippery
  • Silverfish do not have wings and cannot fly.

The silverfish in your home can be considered one of the relatively non-harmful insects that are rarely known to cause significant damage.

But in large populations, they are a nuisance and can eat valuable items.


Can Silverfish Jump?

Silverfish are capable of jumping.

The interesting thing about silverfish is that, despite their small size, they are very adept at jumping. They can jump vertically two feet high!

The interesting thing about silverfish is that, despite their small size, they are very adept at jumping. They can jump vertically two feet high!

There are six short legs on a silverfish, but they are not used for jumping. Instead, silverfish jump with their abdomens. Crawling is faster than jumping for silverfish.

As one of the most widespread insects invading homes, silverfish have a unique appearance.

The scaly bodies and long antennae on both ends of silverfish make them some of the most freaky-looking insects that can roam around your home.


Silverfish Facts

1. The Existence of Silverfish Goes Back a Long Way

The silverfish is one of Earth’s earliest and most primitive insects. A fossilized silverfish has been found as far back as the Paleozoic Era. Research suggests silverfish have been around for at least 400 million years.

That is a long time for an insect to exist when you really think about it! So many other species have been wiped out, like the dinosaurs. But silverfish are survivors

2. Fast Running Is One of the Characteristics of Silverfish

 A silverfish does not possess fangs or venom, which means it is incapable of defending itself against predators. They are powerless to fight back.

The only thing they can do to defend themselves is to speed up. Although they cannot outrun a human completely, it is known that they have been able to outrun even centipedes and spiders that wander, which are two insects known to move rapidly.

A silverfish’s speed is limited to horizontal running. Vertical movement is not possible due to their lack of wings. It may be possible for silverfish to run up a wall; however, they are less agile and quicker to capture. The pests would be as fast as thoroughbreds on a straight track.

A silverfish’s speed is limited to horizontal running. Vertical movement is not possible due to their lack of wings.

3. There Is a Nocturnal Nature to Silverfish

Silverfish are more likely to reveal themselves in your home at night than during the day. A silverfish prefers the dark, as that is where it will seek out food. Silverfish have sensitive compound eyes that cannot handle daylight well.

Additionally, their antennae are very sensitive, allowing them to feel their way around.

4. Silverfish Can’t Swim!

Swimming is not possible for silverfish. Water is not a suitable environment for silverfish, despite their name. The truth of the matter is that if infested items are submerged in water for a short period of time, silverfish will die (unlike roaches, who can hold their breath for a long time.

Silverfish prefer moist places to set up shop. Their fear of water, however, stems from the fact that they can easily drown. 

Swimming is not possible for silverfish. Water is not a suitable environment for silverfish, despite their name.


Silverfish Prevention

Silverfish and other pests cannot enter your home if your home is well-maintained and sealed. This can be accomplished in several ways, including:

  • You can fill in cracks in your basement walls or foundation with liquid cement, available at most hardware shops.
  • Your basement walls should be separated from the ground outside by gravel or a chemical barrier. In contrast to mulch, gravel is moisture-resistant. Moisture attracts silverfish, so this can help keep them away.
  • Don’t let your home get messy. Avoid items being piled up. For example, food should be sealed in airtight containers, and paper products should not be piled on the floor.
  • A pest control expert or exterminator can help you eliminate silverfish that can chew holes in your clothing and other materials.  

Conclusion

The more you know about silverfish, the less frightening they can seem and the easier it is to get rid of them. Silverfish can jump, but not fly. And, indeed, they don’t bite, and cannot swim.

Furthermore, they don’t spread many diseases. 

Despite this, silverfish can cause significant damage to your valuables. This can be very upsetting, especially if your stuff is irreplaceable.

If you get close enough, you might just be lucky to see a silverfish jump.

But don’t wait too long to rid them from your home. The earlier, the better.