Pet Shop Tank Vs Our Tank

SSJ
  • #1
This thought often baffles me. Lot of pet shop tanks are not optimal, and most of them never even run tests like us, they over stack quite often..STILL they have a lower death rate...why? I know breeders who breed in buckets..beating all the science and logic..how ? How? HOW?
 
Fashooga
  • #2
Trade secrets...if they told us they probably kill us.

Also I’m sure it’s practice, practice, practice. They build experience by having losses as well. They can afford losses...us...we go nuts when we lose a fish.
 
DarkOne
  • #3
Most shops do daily water changes or on a system with much more volume of water that you don't see. They also don't feed as much, lowering the waste in the tank. The tanks are also used to the bio load so there's more BB in the tank (gravel, glass, filter).

When fish die, you're not there to see them pick out dead fish. Bucket breeders change water often and are in rooms with temp control.

The devil's in the details.
 
goldface
  • #4
I stock my tanks like a pet shop tank .
 
Dave125g
  • #5
A good pet shop removes dead or dyeing fish several times a day. The other thing is they stock there best selling fish,so they sell out quick.

I walked into a small LFS the other day and counted at least 3 dead fish in every tank. I walked right out. If they can't keep up with that it's because there buying bad stock at the lowest price they can find.
 
SSJ
  • Thread Starter
  • #6
I stock my tanks like a pet shop tank .
And they all survive? Share the secret with us please..and...beer s on me
 
AquaticJ
  • #7
Trade secrets...if they told us they probably kill us.

Also I’m sure it’s practice, practice, practice. They build experience by having losses as well. They can afford losses...us...we go nuts when we lose a fish.

You’re right, we’d have to kill you.


My shop has 10 year old sponge filters in each tank, so they’re absolutely loaded with bacteria. However, I can assure you that we lose fish often, we just remove them before you see them. With over 2000 fish, you lose some.
 
midna
  • #8
idk what ur talking about losses, I see dead fish all the time at my lfs and lps lol
 
Dave125g
  • #9
idk what ur talking about losses, I see dead fish all the time at my lfs and lps lol
I don't think I ever walked into a shop and didn't find any dead fish. I got 4 local shops and they all suck. I order on-line now.
 
Vishaquatics
  • #10
For those who breed in buckets, the secret is to use plants. Plants are so underrated in my opinion. Plants provide shelter, remove CO2, remove excess nutrients from the water, and oxygenate the water, not to mention they can also help to stabilize the water parameters. I have had numerous small and large aquariums with no filtration. The only thing I had in them were plants.
 
Dave125g
  • #11
For those who breed in buckets, the secret is to use plants. Plants are so underrated in my opinion. Plants provide shelter, remove CO2, remove excess nutrients from the water, and oxygenate the water, not to mention they can also help to stabilize the water parameters. I have had numerous small and large aquariums with no filtration. The only thing I had in them were plants.
Also plants grow microorganisms that provide a healthy snack for young fish.
 
SSJ
  • Thread Starter
  • #12
For those who breed in buckets, the secret is to use plants. Plants are so underrated in my opinion. Plants provide shelter, remove CO2, remove excess nutrients from the water, and oxygenate the water, not to mention they can also help to stabilize the water parameters. I have had numerous small and large aquariums with no filtration. The only thing I had in them were plants.
In a 45 gal tank..how many plants I should have. Right now I have 5 potted ones

You’re right, we’d have to kill you.


My shop has 10 year old sponge filters in each tank, so they’re absolutely loaded with bacteria. However, I can assure you that we lose fish often, we just remove them before you see them. With over 2000 fish, you lose some.
Attention everyone: we have an honest individual here!! This forum rocks..the best thing I ever did was to join this group
 
DarkOne
  • #13
In a 45 gal tank..how many plants I should have. Right now I have 5 potted ones
More. Much more.

My 40g

2018-05-18 22.47.18.jpg
 
SSJ
  • Thread Starter
  • #14
In a nutshell..I believe we all will face a good percentage of death rate..and no one can really avoid it.
 
snowballPLECO
  • #15
Fish die, it's part of the hobby.. they're living things and a lot more sensitive to their living space than we are, a lot less adaptable more susceptible to things than we are.
 
Dave125g
  • #16
In a 45 gal tank..how many plants I should have. Right now I have 5 potted ones
You can have as many as you want. This is my jungle 10 gallon. I don't really like a jungle tank, but some people do.
0411181242.jpg
 
DarkOne
  • #17
You can have as many as you want. This is my jungle 10 gallon. I don't really like a jungle tank, but some people do.View attachment 441437
You're getting the anacharis in the 40b. They seem to be the most healthy and green. I have some just as nice in my shrimp tank but I have a limpet problem in there with no fish to help out so I don't think you'd want them.

I have 2 lights on this tank so it always looks overexposed in pics.

2018-05-20 14.48.56.jpg
 
KirkyTurkey
  • #18
A tad off topic to the thread, but talking about plant coverage, my goal is to not be able to see any substrate (haven't reached it yet) and with the amount of plants in this tank, it has never shown anything but 0/0/0 when I do my water tests (also not shown is the mass amount of roots in the filter that suck out excess nutrients)

IMG_1052.jpg
 
Dave125g
  • #19
You're getting the anacharis in this tank. They seem to be the most healthy and green. I have some just as nice in my shrimp tank but I have a limpet problem in there with no fish to help out so I don't think you'd want them.

I have 2 lights on this tank so it always looks overexposed in pics.
View attachment 441439
Oh I've removed most of the plants in this tank its an old picture. Your plants look fantastic. This is what it looks like now. In a few weeks it will became jungle again.
0504180933a.jpg
 
snowballPLECO
  • #20
I feel like there should be a limit to how many plants/decors in a tank otehrwise it takes up swimming space
 
Dave125g
  • #21
I feel like there should be a limit to how many plants/decors in a tank otehrwise it takes up swimming space
Agree, but when it comes to plants most fish like the cover. My skirt tetras are always in the vals.
 
DarkOne
  • #22
My rummynose tetras like to swim thru the sword leaves. The anubias barterI give cover for my cories and plecos so they're out more. I need to trim the anacharis so I'm giving most of them to Dave.
 
Cardeater
  • #23
I don't think I ever walked into a shop and didn't find any dead fish. I got 4 local shops and they all suck. I order on-line now.

I've visited like 10-12 LFS in the Chicago area and only 4 of them I've found to be acceptable. Like you said, in the others I've found dead fish. There's definitely no excuse when the store has been open for 5+ hours and it's slow and I can find multiple dead fish.

I was satisfied with my first online purchase. I may give one of the decent looking stores a chance .
 
Dave125g
  • #24
I've visited like 10-12 LFS in the Chicago area and only 4 of them I've found to be acceptable. Like you said, in the others I've found dead fish. There's definitely no excuse when the store has been open for 5+ hours and it's slow and I can find multiple dead fish.

I was satisfied with my first online purchase. I may give one of the decent looking stores a chance .
My first online purchase was a disaster. I ordered 6 corys. They sent all 6 in 1 bag with less then a cup of water. All DOA. They didn't even honor there guarantee. No refund. Then I found Trins Fish. There awesome.
 
Dch48
  • #25
I'm pretty sure my local PetSmart has a large filtering system in the back behind the tanks. There are outlets and intakes in every tank with a good current and no visible filters. I would assume there is a large filter bed with tons of BB in it. They very rarely have a dead fish in a tank and it always seems to be a day after the last shipment when I see any.

They are really my only source for fish since the only other option within 50 miles is Walmart. I did buy my Mystery snail at Walmart because he was very active and only cost $1.38. PetSmart charges $2.59 and rarely has any. There are multiple stores across Lake Champlain in Vermont but I have to either take a ferry or drive 100 miles using a bridge.
 
ChuthuluFish
  • #26
I honestly have never seen a dead fish a my lps. Also every tank has it’s own spunge filter. And they at most have mabey 20 Minow feeders, but there on a separate system. And the there tanks are preaty clean. As well as some rare catfish
 
FishGirl38
  • #27
This thought often baffles me. Lot of pet shop tanks are not optimal, and most of them never even run tests like us, they over stack quite often..STILL they have a lower death rate...why? I know breeders who breed in buckets..beating all the science and logic..how ? How? HOW?

I work at an LFS, its built on experience and care. We keep all of our tanks on separate undergravel filters, and when a shipment comes in rough, those tanks are put on quarantine. We never overfeed, though fish are fed once per day. The owners and managers are in charge of distributing medication and deciding when to take fish off of quarantine. I'm really not sure of the secrets behind how we keep everything managed. I will say though, don't let what you see fool you. Typically, where I work, when a fish gets sick it happened because they were in a rough shipment (RARELY do we ever have healthy shipment fish turn for the worse after being in our tanks)...BUT, every fish store has a bucket of dead fish hiding in the back. Every one. and we're careful not to make it obvious when we're grabbing the dead ones. It happens, but usually it happens from shipment issues.

Somewhat unrelated, but: I can't stand hyper-vigilant customers who think that every fish I catch is diseased (or who acts/says things that imply that we have many diseased fish), I allow all of my customers to inspect their fish under a light before I bag them (this is not mandatory by my store, just something I do), If I or the customer finds something unfavorable, I catch another and replace it (or refuse the sale and put them on quarantine if the issue is problematic enough). I can't stand when a customer seriously questions the condition of a perfectly healthy fish. That kind of customer behavior is grounds for me to purposely grab the fish with clamped fins...I'm really sweet too, and will even go the extra length to grab 'that one!' as the customer points into the tank. So when customers give me a hard time about our healthy fish, it drives me up a wall.
 
Mcasella
  • #28
Most places take out the dead fish as soon as they can (if they are any good), i'd estimate a good fifth of the fish they bring in don't make it out (counting in feeders and other cheaper fish), they also generally have a high turnover so you don't see half the fish that die outside the store (either because they have been given bad advice and are sticking oscars in ten gallon tanks with fish they can eat or other bad mixups or the fish were sick when they took them and weren't able to heal them).
If a store has dead fish in the tank and hasn't removed them (aka the other fish are now cannibals) I wouldn't shop there. Most LFS/LPS and not chains do not have huge filtration systems for the whole set of tanks, but rather filter each individually as it is easier. Petsmart has one big system in the back that the tank water goes to (with the exception of the goldfish hopefully - I have seen some with two systems and some with one system for the tanks), petco has towers that run to a sump system, most of the tanks are six to a sump, with some going 12 to a larger sump system underneath (my local petco has two with twelve tanks, the salts each over their own, the goldfish/minnows have their own sump, there are five stacks of 6, and two stacks of 12, so 54 tanks total with 24 being in the 12 to a sump, both of those are freshwater).
Most stores that care about the fish know to remove the dead fish asap, so the other fish don't ingest the dead fish (and whatever may have killed it) and so the fish doesn't add ammonia to the system. If they have a QT tank the fish are moved to all the better, if they do not sell from the sick tank even better.
 
Rtessy
  • #29
My LFS (well, kind of local) is honestly amazing. I've never seen a dead fish, they have thousands of options from baby cowfish, a huge variety of saltwater fish and corals, some sea urchins over two feet long, arowanas, tons of fancy freshwater shrimp, dwarf and regular crayfish, quality driftwood and dragonstone, etc. I've never even seen a dead shrimp there. They even have bettas in their community tank, and had fully freshwater flounders. Amazing stock, and the owners are two sisters that really care. They actually gave me 10 juvenile convict cichlids to cycle my tank, for tree, before I had even bought anything from them. They made sure I knew how to test my water, knew a cycled tank, made sure to tell me not to get their water into mine because they use an array of medicine, and just freely give really great information that I feel most LFS would not. They even showed me their huge sump system, it was really incredible. PetSmart and Petco, on the other hand, have multiple dead fish, snails, etc in every single tank and they don't bother to take them out. I've seen them doing water changes and drain entire tanks without realizing because the employees just walked away. I've seen fish sucked down the drain!!
 
SSJ
  • Thread Starter
  • #30
I work at an LFS, its built on experience and care. We keep all of our tanks on separate undergravel filters, and when a shipment comes in rough, those tanks are put on quarantine. We never overfeed, though fish are fed once per day. The owners and managers are in charge of distributing medication and deciding when to take fish off of quarantine. I'm really not sure of the secrets behind how we keep everything managed. I will say though, don't let what you see fool you. Typically, where I work, when a fish gets sick it happened because they were in a rough shipment (RARELY do we ever have healthy shipment fish turn for the worse after being in our tanks)...BUT, every fish store has a bucket of dead fish hiding in the back. Every one. and we're careful not to make it obvious when we're grabbing the dead ones. It happens, but usually it happens from shipment issues.

Somewhat unrelated, but: I can't stand hyper-vigilant customers who think that every fish I catch is diseased (or who acts/says things that imply that we have many diseased fish), I allow all of my customers to inspect their fish under a light before I bag them (this is not mandatory by my store, just something I do), If I or the customer finds something unfavorable, I catch another and replace it (or refuse the sale and put them on quarantine if the issue is problematic enough). I can't stand when a customer seriously questions the condition of a perfectly healthy fish. That kind of customer behavior is grounds for me to purposely grab the fish with clamped fins...I'm really sweet too, and will even go the extra length to grab 'that one!' as the customer points into the tank. So when customers give me a hard time about our healthy fish, it drives me up a wall.
Quite a nice write up. Thanks!!
 
Dch48
  • #31
The fish section in my PetSmart is actually pretty nice. In spite of the mostly clueless employees lol. They just always seem to have the same things and never change things up. It's kind of a weird store anyway since they don't even carry Gerbils. They have Mice, Hamsters, Guinea Pigs, and even Chinchillas. But no Gerbils and I was told they never have them.
 
lauren42
  • #32
My tank is pretty well stocked... and I rarely ever have a death. And if I do it’s normally the old fish! (Many of the platies I’ve had for a long time ) This is the tank currently... I’ve just cleaned it and cut all the plants back!
IMG_3886.JPG
 
RainBetta
  • #33
TBH I think that they get plenty of fish deaths but they remove the dead ones before the store opens
 
Lacey D
  • #34
The last time I went into my preferred LFS, there was ONE dead fish in the entire store -- a baby albino bristlenose pleco. And sometimes that just happens. This store has a quarantine room where all newly shipped or purchased fish sit for at least a month being medicated and observed for issues. I assume they face higher losses in there than on the shop's floor. They also have all their tanks running with sponge filters, daily automated water changes, and are planted for extra nitrate absorption. They also don't overstock, and I know they have a really high turnover of even their pricier fish, with some basically sold out of the quarantine room the minute they arrive, and the customers coming in to pick them up as soon as they're made available BTW, it's Aquarium Co-Op, so if you've seen their YouTube channel, they go into a lot of detail about how they and other petstores run and maintain things. Now, the amazing thing is that he just got back from a trip to Hong Kong and their miles of fish markets, which are INSANELY overstocked but where all the fish seem to be healthy and there are almost never any dead fish. They do it by 1)SUPER high turn-over, 2)Having larger tanks to hold fish during off-hours than their display tanks/bags, 3)AMAZING filtration systems, and 4)Magic water
 
FishGirl38
  • #35
Ahhh! I'd hate to work in a China LFS, yikes.

No, no, no, no, you cannot have 'that one!'. That would be soo hard to do. lol
 
Ms rose
  • #36
My first online purchase was a disaster. I ordered 6 corys. They sent all 6 in 1 bag with less then a cup of water. All DOA. They didn't even honor there guarantee. No refund. Then I found Trins Fish. There awesome.
I just placed my 1st order with trains and is m nervous. I got a rubberlip pleco and adf and a rabbit snail, also 2 crypts.... I heard good things, but I'm so nervous and excited. Glad to c you had good experience
 
Dave125g
  • #37
I just placed my 1st order with trains and is m nervous. I got a rubberlip pleco and adf and a rabbit snail, also 2 crypts.... I heard good things, but I'm so nervous and excited. Glad to c you had good experience
Congrats. You won't be disappointed.
 
CanadianFishFan
  • #38
My fish store in the city dosent care about anything. I was takeing pictures of fish, their were dead goldfish everywhere, sick bettas and no employee in sight. I think I saw one person in the store, I was going to just take all the bettas in my cart and walk out the door. But then ive seen other stores with better....
 
Redguppy67
  • #39
I am always looking for more plants in my aquariums. It takes a bit of thought to aquire
the plants that really suit you and your inhabitants. You can't go wrong withm Anubias,
Vallisinaria, or Amazon Swords. More plants, better filteration and airation.
Just mu humble opinion.
 
Why me
  • #40

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