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Buying fish online?


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I’ve never bought online but have looked into it a good bit. Everyone else here has recommended aquahuna and I know The Co-op is affiliated with them so I would trust them. They also have the cheapest shipping I’ve seen. Aquabid isn’t a store, it’s basically eBay for fish stuff so your experience is going to change based on who is selling. From what I’ve seen on aquabid shipping is always more than Aquahuna’s and honestly the fish prices are a little higher than I expected for hobbiest bred fish, but if your lucky I’m sure you could find good deals. I usually like to look at the mixed lots and $1 auctions hoping to find a good deal.

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I've had mostly good luck with most online places as long as I did my research.  Look at their reviews, look at their shipping and DOA policy.   Email them and ask questions if you are unsure about any part of the process.

We are in rural Texas, and like you our options are limited.

I can certainly recommend AquaHuna, I've never used AquaBid

Edited by GameCzar
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I’ve used both aquahuna and Aquabid. I had really good experiences both times. Aquahuna really does have great shipping and their stock seemed healthy. (No illnesses on a shipment of cardinal tetras from Washington to Maryland?!? I mean, that’s pretty good!) I bought platys from MoBettas on Aquabid and they arrived healthy, alert and energetic.

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I've bought from several different sellers on eBay with 95+% good experiences.  I can send specific sellers names that I've had good experiences with for snails, shrimp, and plants to anyone interested.  My experience has been that the sellers with simple actual pictures of their stock are usually the best as they have limited stick and hand select everything to get a good variation and selection...The sellers with the pro looking storefronts are the "5%ers" that I've run into as they seem to do volume and simply "dip and ship"

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Aquabid and eBay you will get healthier fish strait up. Your buying from the person that breeds them. Don’t buy from people that buy from breeders up the price and sell to you. Also when you don’t deal breeder your dealing store handles thousands fish. The ONLY guarantee live arrivals if all die week later that’s on you.

 

Breeder I’m dealing with I had problem 2 fish took 2 weeks to die he refunded me. It wasn’t he’s fought usps lost them for abit but he fixed me up.

 

check there feedback aquabid and eBay and your dealing with 1 person the breeder. I recently brought from guy in Ohio. And I text him personally helps fix any problems.

 

also all sellers on aquabid are on eBay I’d use eBay more buying protection you can get quick refund if try anything. 

Edited by Maximus297759
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Remember that auction sites such as aquabid are only as good as the seller that is selling the item. Also remember that bad sellers sometime use forged or stolen pictures. Therefore when ordering from an auction site such as aquabid read the reviews of the actual seller carefully and do not depend on the reputation of the auction house. 

I'm mixed on aquahuna generally speaking the fishes have been very healthy (though one ram i did order from them had  shrunken belly which can suggest parasite or extreme ill health); they have excellent warranty for an online sale of fishes and shipping as well as prices in general are good. However the negatives i have observed is the defect level  of fishes i s higher than other online places i've purchased this is more serious for specialized fishes like gourami and cichlid than schooling fishes like rasbora and tetra and unlike some other places they will make no attempt to sex or ship fishes like cichlid in pairs (m/f). This is clearly stated as their policy so not surprising  but some of the alternative places do in fact ship pairs or attempted pairs so something to be aware of when ordering from them if you want a pair or harem. The defects i mentioned above is that some of their fishes will have deformities. This is common when you breed fishes and the worse are normally prune by the seller still their defect level is higher than i have seen by other sellers which makes me sometime wonder if they are selling less premium stock. Please be aware that these minor defects typically won't harm the fishes and for schooling fishes like rasbora and tetra dont' really bother me but again when looking at cichlid or similar they can be more of a concern. Again I want to stress this is normally not an issue with regards to the fish health but i've not had this issue with other sellers i've dealt with er most other sellers i did have a problem with a seller on an auction site with very large deformities (heavily deformed gill coverings on angels). Also if you do receive such a fish and point it out to them they will work with you which is actually pretty decent for mail order site of fishes. 

As a general rule i prefer smaller hobby breeders for the type of fishes i'm buying to say more would violate the guidlines of this site.

Edited by anewbie
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A lot of "private breeders" will also import fish and sell those to keep up with demand. I've seen several YouTube/FishTube guys who started out as private breeders selling their own fry who now mostly import and resell.  You might as well buy from Petsmart as from them since they're all just buying and reselling fish instead of breeding them themselves. If a "private breeder" you're interested in buying from has unboxing videos showing them unboxing hundreds of the fish they're "breeding" yeah, they're not so much a "private breeder" anymore as just another fish store. You have to be a smart consumer these days. If a "private breeder" always has ample stock of whatever fish you're looking for, odds are they're not breeding them but are importing them. Real breeders only have stock from time to time. It's cheaper, easier, and more profitable to import fish than breed them yourself, so many former "private breeders" have gone that route and more or less deceive their buyers who think they've buying locally bred fish. I could name names, but that might get me in trouble, but just be forewarned that it's definitely buyer beware time in the tropical fish hobby. A lot of people who made their reputations on fish they bred, aren't selling fish they bred these days. They're just reselling stuff they imported.

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