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  #1  
Old 02-04-2005, 04:46 PM
Gntry
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Default silverfish

Hi. I know this is a gardening newsgroup, but does anyone know how to rid my
house of silverfish? I know they like dampness,and in the warmer months I
run a dehumidifier all the time and keep my humidity low, but here in the
north(where it's snowing today!) the heat is still on and they have started
coming out already. Is there a spray I can use or poder that will keep them
out of the house?
Thanks for any input.
CG in NY


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  #2  
Old 02-04-2005, 07:25 PM
paghat
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Posts: n/a
Default

In article , "Gntry" wrote:

Hi. I know this is a gardening newsgroup, but does anyone know how to rid my
house of silverfish? I know they like dampness,and in the warmer months I
run a dehumidifier all the time and keep my humidity low, but here in the
north(where it's snowing today!) the heat is still on and they have started
coming out already. Is there a spray I can use or poder that will keep them
out of the house?
Thanks for any input.
CG in NY


This website recommends a shitload of products to control them:
http://www.bugspray.com/articles98/silverfish.html
The usual professional control is pyrethroid insecticide dusting,
including inside walls (through drilled holes). The claims that pyrathrins
are safe to breathe strikes me as dubious, especially since acute toxic
poisoning of humans & pets is well documented from people using it as a
flea control, at concentrations as small as 0.15%, causing "cutaneous
paresthesias, upper respiratory tract irritation, dyspnea with productive
cough, and repetitive vomiting and diarrhea."

Most other chemical choices would be even worse, but one of the least
harmful controls is evaporative pest strips such as Vapona. The chemical
is EXTREMELY toxic & skin-contact with the strip itself is very hazardous,
& if a child or pet gets hold of the strip (some brands look like tasty
cheese), then bad news all round. But it is physically impossible to
deliver a harmful dose to people or other mammals through inhalation, so
properly used with radical attention to all the label wornings, a pest
strip should not be people-safe. Evaporative pest strips treat an entire
room for 30 days, floor to ceiling, & work pretty darned well on
silverfish, mites, lice, fleas, mosquitos.

There are organic control options. Whole cloves are said to shoo away
silverfish, though I suspect that's merely a legend. Boric acid powder
definitely discourages them.

The best control is to remedy damp conditions, which might not be possible
if their primary population is in a damp attic or basement, but should be
easy if their primary population is in the kitchen & bathroom. Also get a
hand-held little vacuum cleaner & vaccuum the areas around sinks &
cabinets to remove all loose food particles & silverfish eggs. You can
make a silverfish trap to assess the degree of infestation as well as
getting rid of the adults: Get a jelly glass or small jar & tape the
outside so silverfish can climb up & into the jar; use a little fine flour
as bait. They cannot climb glass so will not be able to get out, & can be
flushed down the toilet.

Silverfish in the garden do only good & help sustain a rich loam; garden
silverfish or firebrants do not need control. In the house is another
matter. They eat starch & decaying matter. They do NOT eat modern books as
chemical-vendors pretend -- in the old days when books were glued with
flour-based starchy pastes silverfish were a problem, so can still be a
problem for OLD books eating all the glue out of the spine resulting in
loosened sewn-signatures, but modern books are never glued with starch &
silverfish are not attracted to them at all. They do NOT eat paper as the
chemical vendors claim. But kitchens, laundry rooms, & bathrooms are rich
sources of several kinds of starch unless the human inhabitants are
radically about cleanliness.

-paghat the ratgirl
--
Get your Paghat the Ratgirl T-Shirt he
http://www.paghat.com/giftshop.html
"History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden
people maintaining a free civil government." -Thomas Jefferson
  #3  
Old 03-04-2005, 01:31 AM
Lar
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Default

In article , says...
Hi. I know this is a gardening newsgroup, but does anyone know how to rid my
house of silverfish? I know they like dampness,and in the warmer months I
run a dehumidifier all the time and keep my humidity low, but here in the
north(where it's snowing today!) the heat is still on and they have started
coming out already. Is there a spray I can use or poder that will keep them
out of the house?
Thanks for any input.
CG in NY

Unless they are in mass numbers, there may be no need to do anything
at all. They won't damage your clothing and paper damage I see is
usually old papers that are stored in the attic or that has gotten wet
at one time.
They are usually originating from the attic/wall space brought in with
the building materials, especially in the era of wood shingles. I have
seen the best results with Pro-Zap brand pest strip, placed in the
attic, especially above the areas where they are seen inside. I rarely
use more than one in an average sized attic, the most I have used have
been three in a very large home. The dozen or so times I have put them
out I have been surprised with the positive results, though I don't have
enough faith in them to charge for a "silverfish service" with warranty.
Another seemingly effective product is DEKKO Silverfish baits. They
will be placed in areas silverfish are found..closets, storage chests,
file cabinets, dresser drawers. Both products can be found at Pest
control Supply Houses or over the web, though you will be paying three
times the costs if getting them over the web. You can treat around the
wall penetrations with various dusts that help will stop them from
entering the home, though they may push them to other penetrations like
light switches and fixtures. Liquid treatments can also be made around
certain penetrations, but once again won't be the cure.

--
Lar

to email....get rid of the BUGS
  #4  
Old 03-04-2005, 04:14 PM
Stephen Henning
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

In article , says...
I know this is a gardening newsgroup, but does anyone know how to rid my
house of silverfish? I know they like dampness,and in the warmer months I
run a dehumidifier all the time and keep my humidity low, but here in the
north (it's snowing today!) the heat is still on and they have started
coming out. Is there a spray I can use or poder that will keep them
out of the house?


Not a spray, but bait packs. They are small pieces of cardboard that
contain a powder (20% boric acid powder). I have a lot of books and
don't want to risk silverfish damage to my books so I place these bait
packs on the book shelves behind the books. It has worked.

Silverfish will eat any paper they find in a dark out of the way place.
When you see old papers with pieces missing, it was the silver fish that
ate it.

I bought mine from "Walter Drake".

They are available at:

http://www.wdrake.com/product_detail...tem_no=1005048

24 packs for $10.

If you google "silverfish packs" you will find others.

http://www.mileskimball.com/jump.jsp...ProductID=3341

has 24 packs for $8, a better buy.

http://store.doyourownpestcontrol.co...torefront/EN/p
roduct/KB153-6

has 144 packs for $40, a good buy for large quantities.

For complete product details check:

http://www.pesticideinfo.org/Detail_...1300001&DIST_N
R=070313
--
Pardon my spam deterrent; send email to
Visit my Rhododendron and Azalea web pages at:
http://home.earthlink.net/~rhodyman/rhody.html
Also visit the Rhododendron and Azalea Bookstore at:
http://home.earthlink.net/~rhodyman/rhodybooks.html
Cheers, Steve Henning in Reading, PA USA Zone 6
  #5  
Old 03-04-2005, 05:36 PM
paghat
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

In article , Stephen
Henning wrote:

In article , says...
I know this is a gardening newsgroup, but does anyone know how to rid my
house of silverfish? I know they like dampness,and in the warmer months I
run a dehumidifier all the time and keep my humidity low, but here in the
north (it's snowing today!) the heat is still on and they have started
coming out. Is there a spray I can use or poder that will keep them
out of the house?


Not a spray, but bait packs. They are small pieces of cardboard that
contain a powder (20% boric acid powder). I have a lot of books and
don't want to risk silverfish damage to my books so I place these bait
packs on the book shelves behind the books. It has worked.

Silverfish will eat any paper they find in a dark out of the way place.
When you see old papers with pieces missing, it was the silver fish that
ate it.


Silverfish eat paper that is already damp & decaying, not otherwise.
Libraries of antiquarian books can have all the starchy glue eaten out of
the spine, & become "shaken" or "loose" in the binding, & they can get
under the cloth & loosen that from the bookboards; but the pages of such
old books are themselves unharmed & can be rebound. Silverfish have even
eaten the starch out of certain types of paint & canvass sizing, leaving
the paper or canvas that the painting was done on unharmed while
eradicating the artwork, & may eat the coloring off of valuable ephemera.
But in the mainly only if paper is damp & moldy -- in essence, already
destroyed -- will silverfish eat any of it.

When actual holes appear in books, paper, block prints, & so it, it is the
work of Sitodrepa paniceum or drugstore-beetle larvae, or sundry species
Anobium beetle including the "furniture beetle" that can drill through a
whole row of books & right through the bookshelf while its at it; the
Mexican book-beetle (Catorama mexicana), or for old leather books with
holes in the leather, Dermestes lardarius or Larder Beetle that drills
meat & leather; & many other sorts of larvae that look like minute
mealworms & which collectively gave rise to the common name "book worms,"
meaning persons of beetle larvae that devour books.

Silverfish are not a problem for modern books which are not glued with
starch & they do not eat paper. Bookworms however remain a problem since
they do eat paper.

Silverfish are primitive critters older than the dinosaurs. They are
thought to never stop growing & in theory can become extremely large
though they rarely live long enough to prove it. I once found a huge
two-century-old leather-bound book from Germany (of illustrated marchen) &
as I was delicately turning the pages to amaze at the artwork, there
dropped from out of the spine into my lap a silverfish an inch & a half
long & as big around on the big end as my thumb. I almost peed my pants.

-paghat the antiquarian bookseller


I bought mine from "Walter Drake".

They are available at:

http://www.wdrake.com/product_detail...tem_no=1005048

24 packs for $10.

If you google "silverfish packs" you will find others.

http://www.mileskimball.com/jump.jsp...ProductID=3341

has 24 packs for $8, a better buy.

http://store.doyourownpestcontrol.co...torefront/EN/p
roduct/KB153-6

has 144 packs for $40, a good buy for large quantities.

For complete product details check:

http://www.pesticideinfo.org/Detail_...1300001&DIST_N
R=070313

--
Get your Paghat the Ratgirl T-Shirt he
http://www.paghat.com/giftshop.html
"History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden
people maintaining a free civil government." -Thomas Jefferson
  #7  
Old 04-04-2005, 03:38 AM
paghat
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

In article , Stephen
Henning wrote:

(paghat) wrote:

Silverfish eat paper that is already damp & decaying, not otherwise.


Silverfish love newspaper in our basement. The basement is damp in the
summer, but the paper doesn't decay on its own. We have a dehumidifier
in the basement. They seem to keep nibbling at the edges until big
sections are missing.

One trick that helps is to moisten a newspaper (so that it was damp but
not soaking) roll up the newspaper and tie it with an elastic. Do this
at night and the next morning slowly open up the newspaper (it should be
full of silverfish) next either burn the newspaper or empty into a
garbage can outside the house. Do this every night until the newspaper
no longer has any silverfish in it.

Actually the common term silverfish includes:
Silverfish - Lepisma saccharina L.
Four-Lined Silverfish - Ctenolepisma quadriseriata
Long-Tailed or Gray Silverfish - Ctenolepisma longicaudata Esch.
Firebrat - Thermobia domestica

According to the Ohio State University, silverfish and firebrats eat:
glue, wallpaper paste, bookbindings, paper, photographs, starch in
clothing, cotton, linen, rayon fabrics, wheat flour, cereals, dried
meats, leather and even dead insects.


William Lyon simply has that wrong. I see the claim that they eat paper
made time & again but not by anyone who has actual direct experience as a
paper archivist. When stated CORRECTLY the most that will be claimed is
silverfish eat "paper surfaces" (because they eat the sizing off
photographic papers or drygum off of wallpapers, but not the paper
itself).

I have dealt in antique ephemera & rare books for thirty years, & have an
extensive antiquarian book stock right now if you'd like to buy something
old & rare & truly interesting. I have helped restore book collections
after flooding & after poor storage caused them to be damaged by damp or
insects. I have never seen a book nor even a pulp magazine in which the
PAPER was damaged by silverfish. So I maintain there are no silverfish
eating your newsprint as you misdiagnosed. If it were insects at all, it
could be lots & lots of varieties, including cockroaches, but the presence
of silverfish doesn't mean they eat newsprint because they don't.

What you describe doesn't even sound like insect damage; what appears to
be edge-eaten newsprint is caused by oxygen in contact with the acidic
bonding agents in cheap paper, which react to oxygen and/or ultra violet
light, "brittling" the edges of the paper so that it chips away
irregularly or turns to dust. People frequently believe insects or mice
did it, but it is a natural decay process for pulp paper. This doesn't
happen with acid-neutral papers but only with pulp papers that used acid
bonding agents, & the center of the pages are less apt to be damaged
because they are not in contact with oxygen or ultraviolet the way the
edges of a stack of papers or a bound pulp magazine would be.

The RARE instances when silverfish eat paper is when the paper is wet &
partially decayed (because they eat the starch byproducts of mold & mildew
growing on paper); heavily foxed (because they eat the starch byproduct in
the foxing microorganisms); or when paper is heavily contaminated with
dextrose or starch or has been coated with paper sizing (which is pure
starch but is not ordinarily used on book papers, but is on photographic
paper or artists' paper) or which is moldy & already ruined.

It is similarly falsely claimed that "booklice" (psocids) eat paper, but
all they eat are the starch in bindings or the byproducts of any mold or
fungi that has already attacked books. If they ever ate a "hole" in a page
it would be the same way a silverfish might do it, by eating the starchy
spot caused by fungal "foxing" inside books, & rarely even that since it
is antique glues they are after foremost.

I've done a LOT of practical & applied research on archiving books &
paper; I have personally handled thousands upon thousands of books the
glue of which had been entirely eaten away by silverfish, & never seen
even moderate evidence of their having eaten the paper per se. Papers &
books properly stored in low humidity & low-end room temperatures,
silverfish are not a problem, but many libraries & books get stored in
seasonally hot humid basements, & the older books with starchy glues will
attract booklice & silverfish. Their search for starch in vintage books
can be extremely harmful & cause entire bindings to fall apart, & weaken
binding cloth by eating the sizing agent (starch) or eating the inked
letters & designs out of cloth embossures without harming the cloth. The
paper of such ruined books is generally perfectly all right & can be
rebound, unless also afflicted with foxing or fungus. The worst I've seen
silverfish do is when paintings & ephemera with unusual ink mixtures or
paints get eaten off the surface of the paper, but of the paper itself not
a nibble.

That comes direct from an archivist & antiquarian bookseller with decades
of experience. William Lyon knows a great deal about insects & has knocked
off a couple hundred of these "Bug FAQ" sheets assisted by students. He
knows nothing about paper, paper preservation, or the specific problems
insects present to archivsts.

-paggers
--
Get your Paghat the Ratgirl T-Shirt he
http://www.paghat.com/giftshop.html
"History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden
people maintaining a free civil government." -Thomas Jefferson
  #9  
Old 04-04-2005, 01:56 PM
Lar
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Posts: n/a
Default

In article , usenet2005
@THAT-DOMAIN-IN.SIG says...
In article pighash-
,
says...
(paghat) wrote:

Silverfish eat paper that is already damp & decaying, not otherwise.

Silverfish love newspaper in our basement. The basement is damp in the
summer, but the paper doesn't decay on its own. We have a dehumidifier
in the basement. They seem to keep nibbling at the edges until big
sections are missing.

One trick that helps is to moisten a newspaper (so that it was damp but
not soaking) roll up the newspaper and tie it with an elastic. Do this
at night and the next morning slowly open up the newspaper (it should be
full of silverfish) next either burn the newspaper or empty into a
garbage can outside the house. Do this every night until the newspaper
no longer has any silverfish in it.

Actually the common term silverfish includes:
Silverfish - Lepisma saccharina L.
Four-Lined Silverfish - Ctenolepisma quadriseriata
Long-Tailed or Gray Silverfish - Ctenolepisma longicaudata Esch.
Firebrat - Thermobia domestica

According to the Ohio State University, silverfish and firebrats eat:
glue, wallpaper paste, bookbindings, paper, photographs, starch in
clothing, cotton, linen, rayon fabrics, wheat flour, cereals, dried
meats, leather and even dead insects.


Do you have a URL for that info?

Thanks...


http://ohioline.osu.edu/hyg-fact/2000/2108.html
http://entowww.tamu.edu/fieldguide/aimg2.html

--
Lar

to email....get rid of the BUGS
  #10  
Old 04-04-2005, 04:34 PM
Stephen Henning
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Endangered Bucket Farmer wrote:

Actually the common term silverfish includes:
Silverfish - Lepisma saccharina L.
Four-Lined Silverfish - Ctenolepisma quadriseriata
Long-Tailed or Gray Silverfish - Ctenolepisma longicaudata Esch.
Firebrat - Thermobia domestica

According to the Ohio State University, silverfish and firebrats eat:
glue, wallpaper paste, bookbindings, paper, photographs, starch in
clothing, cotton, linen, rayon fabrics, wheat flour, cereals, dried
meats, leather and even dead insects.


Do you have a URL for that info?


http://ohioline.osu.edu/hyg-fact/2000/2108.html

--
Pardon my spam deterrent; send email to
Cheers, Steve Henning in Reading, PA USA
http://home.earthlink.net/~rhodyman
  #11  
Old 05-04-2005, 02:46 AM
carbuff
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

I feel I have to jump in here (this is one of those YMMV situations).
30-some years ago, I sub-let a basement apartment from friends, who warned
me that the suite had silverfish. It wasn't a huge problem for them, since
they had cats who would playwith/eat them, and keep them under control.
Nevertheless, they mentioned it to me.
I should mention that this apt was in an old bldg that was steam heated - in
fact, the feed pipes ran along the ceiling in my main hallway. It was
always hot as hell, and dry as the Sahara.
To cut it short, I had put a paper lantern shade on my bedroon ceiling light
fixture, which proved to be a silverfish buffet. After a few months, it was
full of holes.
Oddly, (thankfully) when I moved out of there, they didn't follow me.



"paghat" wrote in message
news
In article , Stephen
Henning wrote:

(paghat) wrote:

Silverfish eat paper that is already damp & decaying, not otherwise.


Silverfish love newspaper in our basement. The basement is damp in the
summer, but the paper doesn't decay on its own. We have a dehumidifier
in the basement. They seem to keep nibbling at the edges until big
sections are missing.

One trick that helps is to moisten a newspaper (so that it was damp but
not soaking) roll up the newspaper and tie it with an elastic. Do this
at night and the next morning slowly open up the newspaper (it should be
full of silverfish) next either burn the newspaper or empty into a
garbage can outside the house. Do this every night until the newspaper
no longer has any silverfish in it.

Actually the common term silverfish includes:
Silverfish - Lepisma saccharina L.
Four-Lined Silverfish - Ctenolepisma quadriseriata
Long-Tailed or Gray Silverfish - Ctenolepisma longicaudata Esch.
Firebrat - Thermobia domestica

According to the Ohio State University, silverfish and firebrats eat:
glue, wallpaper paste, bookbindings, paper, photographs, starch in
clothing, cotton, linen, rayon fabrics, wheat flour, cereals, dried
meats, leather and even dead insects.


William Lyon simply has that wrong. I see the claim that they eat paper
made time & again but not by anyone who has actual direct experience as a
paper archivist. When stated CORRECTLY the most that will be claimed is
silverfish eat "paper surfaces" (because they eat the sizing off
photographic papers or drygum off of wallpapers, but not the paper
itself).

I have dealt in antique ephemera & rare books for thirty years, & have an
extensive antiquarian book stock right now if you'd like to buy something
old & rare & truly interesting. I have helped restore book collections
after flooding & after poor storage caused them to be damaged by damp or
insects. I have never seen a book nor even a pulp magazine in which the
PAPER was damaged by silverfish. So I maintain there are no silverfish
eating your newsprint as you misdiagnosed. If it were insects at all, it
could be lots & lots of varieties, including cockroaches, but the presence
of silverfish doesn't mean they eat newsprint because they don't.

What you describe doesn't even sound like insect damage; what appears to
be edge-eaten newsprint is caused by oxygen in contact with the acidic
bonding agents in cheap paper, which react to oxygen and/or ultra violet
light, "brittling" the edges of the paper so that it chips away
irregularly or turns to dust. People frequently believe insects or mice
did it, but it is a natural decay process for pulp paper. This doesn't
happen with acid-neutral papers but only with pulp papers that used acid
bonding agents, & the center of the pages are less apt to be damaged
because they are not in contact with oxygen or ultraviolet the way the
edges of a stack of papers or a bound pulp magazine would be.

The RARE instances when silverfish eat paper is when the paper is wet &
partially decayed (because they eat the starch byproducts of mold & mildew
growing on paper); heavily foxed (because they eat the starch byproduct in
the foxing microorganisms); or when paper is heavily contaminated with
dextrose or starch or has been coated with paper sizing (which is pure
starch but is not ordinarily used on book papers, but is on photographic
paper or artists' paper) or which is moldy & already ruined.

It is similarly falsely claimed that "booklice" (psocids) eat paper, but
all they eat are the starch in bindings or the byproducts of any mold or
fungi that has already attacked books. If they ever ate a "hole" in a page
it would be the same way a silverfish might do it, by eating the starchy
spot caused by fungal "foxing" inside books, & rarely even that since it
is antique glues they are after foremost.

I've done a LOT of practical & applied research on archiving books &
paper; I have personally handled thousands upon thousands of books the
glue of which had been entirely eaten away by silverfish, & never seen
even moderate evidence of their having eaten the paper per se. Papers &
books properly stored in low humidity & low-end room temperatures,
silverfish are not a problem, but many libraries & books get stored in
seasonally hot humid basements, & the older books with starchy glues will
attract booklice & silverfish. Their search for starch in vintage books
can be extremely harmful & cause entire bindings to fall apart, & weaken
binding cloth by eating the sizing agent (starch) or eating the inked
letters & designs out of cloth embossures without harming the cloth. The
paper of such ruined books is generally perfectly all right & can be
rebound, unless also afflicted with foxing or fungus. The worst I've seen
silverfish do is when paintings & ephemera with unusual ink mixtures or
paints get eaten off the surface of the paper, but of the paper itself not
a nibble.

That comes direct from an archivist & antiquarian bookseller with decades
of experience. William Lyon knows a great deal about insects & has knocked
off a couple hundred of these "Bug FAQ" sheets assisted by students. He
knows nothing about paper, paper preservation, or the specific problems
insects present to archivsts.

-paggers
--
Get your Paghat the Ratgirl T-Shirt he
http://www.paghat.com/giftshop.html
"History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden
people maintaining a free civil government." -Thomas Jefferson



 




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