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BIG Ideas you'd like to see: LFS Edition


nabokovfan87
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Hey everyone,

I had this idea pop into mind and maybe it makes sense for some places.  It is definitely a long term project and something that would pay dividends and make a seriously one of a kind experience for the customer....

Imagine if a fish store could take their waste water and use it for plants, simple.  What if those plants were alder trees, produced botanical plants, manzanita wood, and all those natural items we wanted in our tanks.  OK... now you're talking.  Now take it a step further, you go to the local fish shop, get to go and pick pesticide free botanicals, pick from branches that were trimmed, and then go head over to get your hardscape like it's some sort of aquarium decor orchard.  Not only do you get to see and experience these things as designed, but you actually get to see a bit about the natural world in ways we really don't.  Just imagine seeing that as a kid and what kind of an impact that could have long term.

What kind of big projects, big ideas do you think is possible one day? (no cost or limitations to stop things from happening)

......and yes, I looked up details on planting an alder tree in the yard this week and I find myself always looking around when driving wondering if that bush that looks like manzanita is actually manzanita or not.

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I've always like the idea of a combined fish store/garden center/greenhouse. Waste water from the aquarium side waters the plants on the greenhouse side. The greenhouse can also custom grow aquatic plants for the fish store. It would hold down costs on both sides and with things like garden ponds/koi there's already a certain amount of overlap.

Growing non-native organics for use in aquariums is probably not cost effective, but finding native organics that could be used in aquariums makes sense. Acorns, oak leaves, pine needles, maple leaves, and assorted native seeds/leaves are areas you don't see explored much. Some/many might be as effective as the exotic stuff we import and available in massive quantities right outside our doors.

I'd like to see a pure fish store explore the more exotic tank designs. Things like a high flow river/stream tank. A tank designed for archerfish with lots of room for them to shoot down their prey. Monster tanks (fiberglass? plywood? sectional?) that could be bought and easily assembled by the buyer. Different things than the normal stuff. Maybe tanks with electronics built in to monitor the status. Go beyond the norm and stretch people's imaginations on what a "fish tank" could be. If you have a store in a part of the country where basements/cellars are the norm, demonstrate how a hole could be cut into the basement floor and excavated to create a monster fish pond in one's basement. Limited structure needed as the earth would support the sides (assuming the house isn't built on sand.) There are lots of things that could be done to break the mold of a "normal" fish store. 

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On 1/23/2023 at 6:46 AM, gardenman said:

Growing non-native organics for use in aquariums is probably not cost effective, but finding native organics that could be used in aquariums makes sense. Acorns, oak leaves, pine needles, maple leaves, and assorted native seeds/leaves are areas you don't see explored much. Some/many might be as effective as the exotic stuff we import and available in massive quantities right outside our doors.

100%.  I woke up and realized the word I was trying to find. An arboretum! We have one local at the college I went to and you go from a bamboo forest and walk into a desert landscape. Some work and it's a really fun experience.

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On 1/23/2023 at 9:46 AM, gardenman said:

I've always like the idea of a combined fish store/garden center/greenhouse.

There was a store like this up by Detroit, MI until last fall, and they closed. I only went there one time, so I am not sure if they used waste water from the fish tanks to water plants or not, but it was cool. 

I am not sure, but it seems like the store that MD fish tanks gets his fish and stuff form in the UK is like this as well. The guy that runs the store also has a channel, Fish Shop Matt. They've never shown much other than the aquatics, but in one video he showed himself walking through a greenhouse with a bunch of plants to go into the aquatic store.  

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On 1/23/2023 at 12:44 PM, Theplatymaster said:

i wish the employees at my LFS were a little more educated, so its not like it is now where they "think its a rotala"

I butted in on a conversation between an employee and another customer this weekend to tell them nerites can't reproduce in fresh water. The customer wanted several as long as they wouldn't take over and the employee said 'They shouldn't.' But he didn't sound very sure about it.

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On 1/23/2023 at 1:44 PM, Theplatymaster said:

i wish the employees at my LFS were a little more educated, so its not like it is now where they "think its a rotala"

My LFS was recommended by the local chain store. I think they rely more on what the vendor says, than actual knowledge. That may be why some of my early attempts failed. That might also be why they don't know which Crypts are in the tank labeled Crypts Bunch.

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I don’t want to derail this topic. But I have been in a few chain stores in my area lately because no one competes with a $1/gallon sale. They aren’t looking too hot. I mean I am lucky enough to live in a high hobbyist density so the LFS, not just ACO, are popping… 

 

Anyway I agree using wastewater for plants would be really cool! Id also like to see more local species offered. Especially for pond setups. I really don’t understand the whole ‘weaker genetic pool’ argument when we struggle with invasives. The dojo loach and channel cat is now considered introduced in many states, while many native killifish are threatened due to habitat loss. I am quite literally willing to setup a habitat in my backyard for them, for free.

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On 1/24/2023 at 9:11 AM, Biotope Biologist said:

Anyway I agree using wastewater for plants would be really cool! Id also like to see more local species offered. Especially for pond setups. I really don’t understand the whole ‘weaker genetic pool’ argument when we struggle with invasives. The dojo loach and channel cat is now considered introduced in many states, while many native killifish are threatened due to habitat loss. I am quite literally willing to setup a habitat in my backyard for them, for free.

I'm actually watching videos of this guy on youtube, he has his own Indian Almond tree for leaves.  Going to try to locate one for the house, then I thought about an alter tree.  A Manzanita bush is likely FINE in the front yard, but..... just funny how we go down these rabbit holes.

The idea came from pondering Cory's setup.  His pond, his creek, and just how that would flow into that type of a setup quite literally.  Obviously he wouldn't want customers at the house, but what a cool thing to be able to have on hand if it made sense.

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On 1/24/2023 at 4:22 PM, Katherine said:

I've seen this in videos (maybe coop videos of Europe?) but I'd love to have an area to play around with hardscape in the right area for my tank size before buying it.


That’s actually really smart. Like cardboard boxes cut to the dimensions of common tanks sizes. Frustrating to have the “buy more than you need” mentality when some of these hardscape pieces can get spendy. As always this forum never ceases to amaze.

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On 1/24/2023 at 7:26 PM, Biotope Biologist said:

Like cardboard boxes cut to the dimensions of common tanks sizes. Frustrating to have the “buy more than you need” mentality when some of these hardscape pieces can get spendy.

Cardboard would be such an easy way. Even if it was just a flat piece cut to the size of the bottom.

The first time I bought tank decor I was at a big box and put a 10g tank on the floor and then put the pieces I was thinking of using in it to make sure they'd fit. I'm not sure they would have been to happy with that if anyone had happened to notice.

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On 1/24/2023 at 6:45 PM, Katherine said:

Cardboard would be such an easy way. Even if it was just a flat piece cut to the size of the bottom.

The first time I bought tank decor I was at a big box and put a 10g tank on the floor and then put the pieces I was thinking of using in it to make sure they'd fit. I'm not sure they would have been to happy with that if anyone had happened to notice.

This made me chuckle. also, love it!!

On 1/25/2023 at 6:07 PM, Schuyler said:

QR codes next to fish info plates.

Scanning it will bring you to a website with a species overview.

this is a really solid idea in my mind. I think QR codes for a lot of items, not just fish/plants, is a great idea.

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