Fish That You Think Are Not Worth The Price Tag

andrewkw

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When I look at a fish and it's price I never (rarely) take into consideration it's looks. The things I think about most are, where did it come from, it's size (freight), and availability. If you're seeing the same $1000 fish week, in week out then maybe they shouldn't be that much unless it's a giant, but if it's something you don't see for sale very often then availability can have an effect on price.

Of course this is not always true for the price. One example off the top of my head would be a Lineatus and Scotts wrasse. While I'm not 100% sure they come from the same area, they are both of similar size and Australian, but the Lineatus generally costs more, despite being somewhat more readily available. It's possible to discount some of this since Scotts are available from other locations much cheaper, but the Australian ones are certainly more colourful.

When I see an Angelfish for $1000+ I can generally see why it costs that much even if I personally would not spend it.
 

andrewkw

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For me, it would be large naso tangs. Personally, I’m not a fan of their looks and when you compare how much they cost to the price of smaller naso tangs, it just doesn’t make sense
Water is expensive to ship. It makes perfect sense.
 
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EMeyer

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To consider what is an appropriate price for a fish, or any other product, we should consider what it costs to produce. The appropriate price for anything is cost of production plus a small to moderate profit margin, enough to support a middleman or two in the supply chain. Mature markets eventually converge on this price, in the absence of price fixing or other interference from regulators.

So lets consider numbers. Almost all fish are sold by collectors for <3$ each (really, many are <$1). Shipping adds a LOT to that, perhaps another 5-20$ depending on lots of factors. But its not charged per fish, it is per box. IOW, the retailer or wholesaler essentially buys all fish for *the same price* and it is a low price, even including shipping. (I will add the caveat that I havent looked into collector costs of extremely rare fish. But the collector + shipping costs for a fish that retails for $10 vs a fish that retails for $80 are essentially the same)

After reviewing these numbers I've come to the following conclusions
1. The fish commonly kept in saltwater aquariums are appropriately priced, leaving a small to moderate profit margin for the retailer.
2. Differences in price between fish are not justifiable based on costs. Very expensive fish typically have *much* higher profit margins than common fish. An $80 wrasse and a $5 damsel cost the importer about the same amount to get in.
3. Any fish over $40 or so, unless *extremely* rare, is overpriced.
 

ADAM

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It seems to boil down to this; if you don’t see them often for sale= big $ tag. Once they become a little more readily available= med $ tag. Once they are somewhat common to see in stock somewhere and no one is buying because the allure of a high priced “exclusive” fish is now a fairly common $400 specimen the price will drop to a fair $ tag.

I never liked the Gem Tang that much, I was far more impressed by the Achilles tang and the husbandry of someone who was able to keep one alive for a substantial amount of time.

All the pretty fish I buy, be it expensive or cheap, seem to disappear. The decent looking fish that serve a purpose to the system all flourish. I have gone to near extremes to provide correct diet and habitat needs for the expensive “pretty” ones and to no avail, gone like a 59 Cadillac.....
 

Topekoms

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It seems to boil down to this; if you don’t see them often for sale= big $ tag. Once they become a little more readily available= med $ tag. Once they are somewhat common to see in stock somewhere and no one is buying because the allure of a high priced “exclusive” fish is now a fairly common $400 specimen the price will drop to a fair $ tag.

I never liked the Gem Tang that much, I was far more impressed by the Achilles tang and the husbandry of someone who was able to keep one alive for a substantial amount of time.

All the pretty fish I buy, be it expensive or cheap, seem to disappear. The decent looking fish that serve a purpose to the system all flourish. I have gone to near extremes to provide correct diet and habitat needs for the expensive “pretty” ones and to no avail, gone like a 59 Cadillac.....
I would agree I love my Achilles tang have had it for about 3 year its been thru a house fire and it still going. I don't see them as hard to keep as most people think I really think keeping one boils down to QT if you have proper QT procedures then you can keep one pretty easily
 
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Jase4224

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What about the “Holy Grail” the Peppermint Angel how can you justify prices upwards of 30,000.00 US dollars for a fish!
Because it lives in 400ft of water, in a remote part of the Pacific Ocean that is outside of normal collecting locations and requires many hours in a small submarine to collect. Not to mention there’s no guarantee one would even be found let alone survive decompression and shipping. It’s a pretty big deal just to get one into captivity..

Not saying I’d pay it even if I had the $$ but there is good reason for it’s ridiculous cost.
 

sde1500

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To consider what is an appropriate price for a fish, or any other product, we should consider what it costs to produce. The appropriate price for anything is cost of production plus a small to moderate profit margin, enough to support a middleman or two in the supply chain. Mature markets eventually converge on this price, in the absence of price fixing or other interference from regulators.

So lets consider numbers. Almost all fish are sold by collectors for <3$ each (really, many are <$1). Shipping adds a LOT to that, perhaps another 5-20$ depending on lots of factors. But its not charged per fish, it is per box. IOW, the retailer or wholesaler essentially buys all fish for *the same price* and it is a low price, even including shipping. (I will add the caveat that I havent looked into collector costs of extremely rare fish. But the collector + shipping costs for a fish that retails for $10 vs a fish that retails for $80 are essentially the same)

After reviewing these numbers I've come to the following conclusions
1. The fish commonly kept in saltwater aquariums are appropriately priced, leaving a small to moderate profit margin for the retailer.
2. Differences in price between fish are not justifiable based on costs. Very expensive fish typically have *much* higher profit margins than common fish. An $80 wrasse and a $5 damsel cost the importer about the same amount to get in.
3. Any fish over $40 or so, unless *extremely* rare, is overpriced.
I think you're missing a lot here. Size of fish doesn't matter? I can get a box with dozens of damsels, or a couple larger fish. Same box fee, but you'd say the prices of those larger fish are over priced? Beyond that every list I've ever seen for wholesale/transhsip prices are not even remotely the same across all fish. So where do you arrive at the conclusion that all fish cost the same?
 

SlipperyWhipple

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I'm the master of our household, but she runs the reef tank! :)

A corollary:
The Gem tang, black tang, Koi tang, rare angels and butterflyfishes, those are all worth the price they command. My wife is beyond price and free to good home. No offers refused.
In terms of angels, would you consider a flame angel in that category?
 

flounder

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I had a zebra tang for a bit. $1,400 but no one knew it was that. Every one thought it was a convict tang.

Also there is very little difference between my joculator and a bicolor angel. Not sure that was worth that.
 

Aquarist76

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Everything is relative on what you can afford to spend and how much you want it. I always wanted a Gem tang. Paid $900 for one and it died after 9-10 days. Was that worth it. Well heck no. It stunk (no guarantee, sketchy seller). That being said I went out and bought another shortly after at a similar price and still have him almost a year later. Do not regret it at all.
 

Dan Watson

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Lots of angels and tangs and a lot of other exotics. my favorite species are limited to price, but i do plan to get a marine betta someday. also some ugly *** clowns get wayy too pricey.
 
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