LFS vs corporate online fish?

Sump Crab

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Is there any way that a LFS can feasibly compete with the big online vendors when it comes to fish? I want to support LFS but I feel like a fool for buying a fish that's usually more $$ and with no "warranty". For example I was quoted $200 to order a mystery wrasse with no guarantee from my LFS but I can get one from petco for $175 delivered to my door with a 7 day guarantee.
 

dschuffert

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That is an interesting question. I prefer purchasing from my particular LFS because I know how they care for the fish, I see their quarantine process, and they warranty their fish. I am happy to pay a fair premium for that. I have also ordered online and have been happy with the fish I got there (Biota).

I wouldn't buy from the LFS you describe because they do not do what my LFS does.
 

kevgib67

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I bought all 7 of my fish from my lfs, I’m lucky to have such a good one. They have all been in there over two years except for the tailspot I added about four months ago. I prefer buying local, I can watch the fish eat and get a good idea about it’s health. Buying local greatly reduces shipping stress.
 

kdx7214

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I have seen both great and awful LFS. The one where I live is on the bad side of things. However, I recently bought a Biota captive bred green filefish and is by far the calmest and most well adapted fish I've ever owned. So I can see both sides.
 

PotatoPig

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I buy almost all livestock in person unless I just can’t source otherwise - eg I got my mandarin from biota because nobody seemed to carry them locally.

I also tend to buy incrementally, so would clock up a fortune in shipping, so even though in store is often a little more expensive per item it works out better for me than buying online.

I also like being able to see the exact specimen I’m buying, pick a specific one if there are multiple, and the 15 minutes from tank to tank is also nice vs shipping times and delays.
 
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Sump Crab

Sump Crab

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I buy almost all livestock in person unless I just can’t source otherwise - eg I got my mandarin from biota because nobody seemed to carry them locally.

I also tend to buy incrementally, so would clock up a fortune in shipping, so even though in store is often a little more expensive per item it works out better for me than buying online.

I also like being able to see the exact specimen I’m buying, pick a specific one if there are multiple, and the 15 minutes from tank to tank is also nice vs shipping times and delays.

I tend to agree with all your points but Petco has free shipping on livestock over $100 and offers a 7 day guarantee. It's hard to beat that!
 

Reefing102

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I generally try to buy fish and dry goods local, but often times recently, they just don’t have that special fish that I want or the price just isn’t where I feel it should be.

However I have bought from Petco online and it was direct from Quality Marine. My one LFS is often competitive to online (when shipping is calculated in) and also offers a 7 day guarantee, however their fish are a “must quarantine” status as they often have some fish that are diseased in someway. Thought I’ve heard recently they’ve started having their invert/coral free tanks maintain therapeutic levels of copper.
 

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