Some things were missed out of a Country Year, there just wasn’t room, but I thought you might all be fascinated to learn about Silverfish – so here is what might have been:
Silver-fish Lepisma saccharina
The silver-fish is one of a group of small wingless insects known as bristle-tails of the sub-class Apterygota. They are nocturnal and are commonly found in cupboards in the house scurrying out of sight with a silvery flash. They have a fascinating mating ritual whereby at first the male and female stand face to face touching each other with their antennae, hopping backwards and forwards. The male then runs away with the female in hot pursuit until they stand side by side head-to-tail with the male vibrating his tail against her. Finally the male lays a spermatophore, which is a capsule of sperm encased in gossamer, that the female takes into her body via her ovipositor to fertilise her eggs.
Silver-fish can live for up to eight years and may go through fifty or so moults in their lifetime which is many more than most other insects.
Fascinating don’t you think??