Fish Quality

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JamesFish
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Fish Quality

Post by JamesFish »

I admit I am not the greatest at my fish keeping but have learned allot the hard way over the years.

Lately I seem to be having a really hard time going to shops and actually buying anything (Yes this is odd as I have plenty of space for the right sized fish).

My first issue is am looking to buy a group and frequently not enough corys to make a 6 group for a fair chance of at least 1 male or female in the mix.

Second issue is disease in the tanks. Now I know shops are massively over stocked but dead fish in a rack these days normally just put me off. I'm sorry but shops should have checked before opening and cleaned up so they are recent or they are not bothering. Visible diseases on the fish the main ones are fungus and white spot. I know these are common but when I see them I now just turn off anything in that rack as no longer buyable without issues. I'm aware temp increase with a little salt, or meds can fix these but don't see why I should have to do that on a brand new purchase.

Third issue is price - I know prices move around a little and different shops have different mark ups. But lately when I go looking for stuff they seem to want top pay for very small and often sickly looking fish. Today was looking at clown plecos and all the ones up the glass had sunken bellies. No wood in the tank so don't know what they were eating.

Am I being too fussy? Wanting a healthy fish in enough numbers to start a project or at a sexable size to see if they are the mix required. Or have my last 4 shop visits just been bad luck?
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Re: Fish Quality

Post by Iamfish »

The fish stores I have gone to always cleaned out the dead fish and I have never seen visible diseases on there fish so I would say it was just bad luck. Keep trying different stores and hopefully you will find a good one or you can order fish online from a trusted website like https://www.wetspottropicalfish.com/
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Re: Fish Quality

Post by MarcW »

Hopefully you have just been unlucky.

Although, around me there aren't many good fish stores, one or two within an hours drive, although they appear to look after their fish well, they don't have much variety. I also echo your comment on numbers, rarely, locally have I seen groups of catfish for sale, other than some common Corys, most local stores seem to buy in one of each of the popular L numbers and then wait until they are all gone to restock.

For me if I'm buying fish I'll usually head up north to get them, that involves about an 8 hour round trip driving but I know what I'm getting.
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Re: Fish Quality

Post by Viktor Jarikov »

Perhaps you have been to the stores that don't cater to a higher level hobbyist or to the stores who only care and are satisfied with their current sales.
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Re: Fish Quality

Post by racoll »

Yeah, these are very much observations I have made too.

But having chatted to some store staff, I can also see it from their side. They order in a box or a large number of species x, but sometimes they just don't look as great as they were expecting from pictures. Now they are lumped with dozens of fish nobody wants to buy, and need to feed and house them for a long time. If they are a sensitive and expensive fish on top of that, then they are likely to even die before they get sold, resulting in big dent in the overall profit margin.

Price can be so massively variable, even in the same chain or even the same shop (bargains and rip-offs in the same tank!). Definitely shop around I think. I have found fish a lot cheaper in Wales or up North. Good idea to do some LFS visits if you are on the road for any reason.
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Re: Fish Quality

Post by kvnbyl »

i can only speak for the states but i know here, most of the good local pet stores are gone. they have largely been replaced by places that are way more interested in selling cat and dog food than fish. the fish are frequently in bad shape, absolutely have to be quarantined and still often don't make it to the 14 day guarantee. there are always deads floating all over the tank.

worse, in a place where the biggest tank is a 55 there are oscars and catfish (think red tail!) that will get far far too big for the largest tank they have for sale (nor will they special order tanks). there are a couple of upscale places 25 or so miles away (this is right in the middle of the boston metro area!) and their prices are out of sight. they cater to the extremely upscale hobbyist and even there the selection is is steadily shrinking.

what they have driven us to is fish via the internet. i know it sucks but this is the country that practically worships Amazon. I can buy fish, have them the next day, have paid nothing in shipping for an order over 99.00 and still get a 14 day guarantee.
to boot, the fish are almost always cheaper than the columnaris - is - us - stores.
there are also internet stores for the extremely upscale hobbyist, they have an incredible selection of quality hard to find fish but the overnight shipping is out of sight, like 75.00 for 40.00 worth of fish (not sure what that is in euros :))

i believe that there are far fewer people keeping fish here than there were even 10 years ago, would guess that gaming, on line activities and the always connected lifestyle in general leave less money for keeping fish that are probably going to die anyway
not sure what it's like across the pond..
(plus there isn't anyone under 40 at the local fish society)
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Re: Fish Quality

Post by Bas Pels »

(not sure what that is in euros
Yesterday I got an exchange rate of 1.12 US $ for an euro. I was rather disappointed.

With regard to how many people keep fish, here there are ups and downs, but not every city has decent fish stores. My town has a decent one, the next is 80 km farther away, with not much in between.
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Re: Fish Quality

Post by Stuey »

Hi there,

Yes I can agree, if can be really difficult buying stock, guess it comes down to trust in your local fish shop and the staff that run it.

After more than several unsuccessful (and not cheap) buying experiences I paid a visit to Pier Aquatics in Wigan (some 35+miles away from home, so not so local) and that was just over 12 yrs ago.
Been going there ever since (back this Sunday), so basically found a good shop, with amazing staff and a massive selection of amazing fish from guppys to rare L numbers.
I am guess I am just saying finding a trusted shop, even if it is not on your doorstep is well worth it
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Re: Fish Quality

Post by Aqua_Bankie »

In the early days for myself I wasn’t experienced enough to spot signs or observe behaviour etc on the fish I wanted.

Anyway mistakes made and learned from, forward to many years later, I now have a fair idea of what to look for not an expert by any stretch of the imagination but more experienced.

I don’t think your being fussy at all , the problem for me with new purchases is like yourself any sign of disease , poor quality etc I’m out , and on the other hand some shops have great healthy fish but lack variety.

Over the years in my local area Glasgow and the surrounding areas some Shops have popped up and been very good , but over the years have closed ,changed owners etc. , I now only really check out two shops locally well kind of local which have a chance of getting the stock and quality I want and they are about a 70-80 mile round trip in fact I have travelled on a few occasions south into England on 450 mile round trips to get the fish I want and no doubt I will again !

Shop around but it may be a road trip to get what you want but better that than poor quality
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Re: Fish Quality

Post by JamesFish »

Still on hunt but did go out again. Fish generally in better shape this time but just couldn't stomach the price being asked or why they were so white washed and all appeared to be male. I felt £8 each for non adult peppered corys was just to much.

Couldn't see the tummies on the clown plecos so wasn't biting.

The live bears am after had all the fins clamped shut so decided to give it a miss.

Going to have another go next weekend be a bigger chain I hate using or an hour's drive. 12 in a quarantine tank min if I use the chain with its own bucket and pipe...
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Re: Fish Quality

Post by Bas Pels »

Normally I'd expect C paleatus go sell @ 2,5 euros, for not adults arond 4 cm. Healthy ones
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