Lepisma saccharina (commonly called the fishmoth, urban silverfish, silverfish, or carpet shark) is a small, wingless insect typically measuring from a half to one inch (12–25 mm). Its common name derives from the animal's silvery light grey and blue colour, combined with the fish-like appearance of its movements, while the scientific name indicates the silverfish's diet of carbohydrates such as sugar or starches. It belongs to the basal insect order Thysanura.
The reproduction of silverfish is preceded by a ritual involving three phases, which may last over half an hour. In the first phase, the male and female stand face to face, their trembling antennae touching, then repeatedly back off and return to this position. In the second phase the male runs away and the female chases him. In the third phase the male and female stand side by side and head-to-tail, with the male vibrating his tail against the female. Finally the male lays a spermatophore, a sperm capsule covered in gossamer, which the female takes into her body via her ovipositor to fertilize the eggs she will lay later on.
Young silverfish are white in color.
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