View Full Version : Buying fish online??

07-07-2010, 09:30 PM
I am seeing more and more places advertising online and shipping fish.

This sounds hazardous for the fish during transportation. Does anyone have any good or bad experiences with purchasing fish online?

07-07-2010, 09:32 PM
I do it all the time, well packed fish travel well.

little hawaii
07-07-2010, 09:38 PM
You can buy through aquabid too and have a good record of transaction. Like live guarantees and such. You can read customer feed backs there too.

07-07-2010, 11:37 PM
I thought that ordering online was a bad thing when I first started looking for fish...I didn't think it was nice to mail fish. Then I went to my LFS and saw that they just bought their fish the same way. So now I think buying at the LFS is more traumatic since the fish just have to travel twice. I have ordered almost all of my fish on aquabid and had great success....no dead fish at all!

07-07-2010, 11:49 PM
I recently purchased a fish from aquabid and it went well. One thing you may want to check on some of the distributors is if they also sell dyed fish. Most of the distributors also have a website with a listing of what they sell.

07-07-2010, 11:58 PM
My expriences have been relativley good. I don't do it a ton so I couldn't tell exactly how it is. But if you find a good online seller than its probably better to buy online than in a store.

07-08-2010, 05:22 AM
I've ordered live plants, Red Cherry Shrimp (on two occasions), four stunning male Betta, and just a little over a month ago, eight Multies (Neolamprologus Multifasciatus.) I have yet to have any die in shipping. I even ended up with more shrimp than I'd paid for because the extras (added in case of DOA) were healthy as well! That's the good.

The bad was this last order, the Multies, which appeared to be fine but were actually infected with internal parasites which have taken me a month to treat and I ended up losing three of those eight. But as I said, this wasn't from shipping. This was just a bad seller. On the whole I recommend purchasing online as you're more likely to get healthy fish and get them at a much better price than you could locally. Deal with reputable sellers and be sure of their policies before you order. Make sure you have EVERYTHING prepared for the arrival of the fish. Open the box in a darkened room so as to not startle them as they've been in the dark for a day or two and they don't need that kinda shock. Drip acclimate the fish for a period of 1-2 hours to gently get them used to your local water. Using a small air pump and airstone to agitate the holding tank while drip acclimating so the water is rich in O2. Ideally you should put the fish in quarantine for a month or so before introducing them to their permanent home.

Good luck and let us know how your order turns out!


07-08-2010, 06:28 AM
I get livestock in on a monthly basis from online sources and like others have mentioned; getting it from a reputable seller is key.

A good seller will clearly state his shipping policy and DOA policy as well as how he will handle the situation.

A good seller will also get in contact with you within the day of arrival to make sure everything is in good order.

A good seller will advise you on his water quality and will suggest as to how you should acclimate the livestock.

A good seller will also know when to strongly advise you on which shipment method, whether or not to hold back shipment in case of weather delay, using heat packs for cool temp and ice packs or gel for hot weather.

A good seller will ask you to give him at least 2 days so he can stop feeding the fishes to get them ready for the trip.

A good seller will show you his fish with pictures upon request.

Southwest airport to airport is best if you are receiving delicate livestock or very large livestock to guarantee a higher chance of survival.

FedEx and USPS can also be used but sometimes even if rarely; they do botch up the job. Off course, it's not all ill intended and some are indeed weather related. That's why it's best to receive your fish on a weekday as opposed to Saturday shipping. If you wish to receive your shipment on Saturday, there's a chance that a snow storm may cause delay and your fish will be stranded in the warehouse until Monday. Most likely, your fishes will be dead by then.

That's why if you can, have the receiving date be on a weekday.

Do a thorough research on the seller before making a purchase and try browsing through the forums for reviews. Don't just base it on what's on the seller's website in terms of testimonials. A lot of sellers aren't honest enough to put negative feedback onto that page. If there's a rating system; look into the negative and neutral reviews.

Lady Hobbs
07-08-2010, 01:18 PM
Gotten fish several times online and also sold online. Only had a problem one time with fish I was shipping when a bag leaked and the box sat in the post office for 26 days before they contacted me.

There were about 6 fish still living!

07-09-2010, 05:09 AM
WOW!!!!!!!!!! 26 days???!!!


What kind of fish were these?


07-11-2010, 02:18 AM
Do you think it would be safe to import a sparkling gourami to Aust from wherever it'd have to come?

I want to get a purring one but why local shops are disinclined to import them. I'm just thinking it, not doing it at the moment.

07-11-2010, 03:37 AM
Are there other shops you can deal with? Importation, especially in Aus, can be a real pain in the ass. There's fees and forms that have to be dealt with and everything has to be right or the fish'll die on the docks before it's cleared up. You may be able to deal with a shop in Aus that can import and then ship to you directly. The good news is that Labyrinth fishes such as Gourami and Betta usually ship very well or at least the more hardy of these species do but that's true of any species. Good luck.


07-11-2010, 03:51 AM
Online is great if you research the company before you buy. As mentioned make sure they have a "Live delivery Guarantee" The fish are often packed well and even drugged sometimes to make sure they travel well.

As to purchasing fish that are rare for your area. I often become friends with the owner and especially the guy who does the ordering at several LFS. And you can tell them what you want and what you will pay to get it and let them order it for you.

07-11-2010, 08:20 AM
I already have. I'm such a regular at my two local stores that when I exchanged fish the forum recommended I shouldn't have for better fish, the keeper gave me an instant discount. Same for the other store, sold me the stand cheaper than retail.

One said it's hard to get sparkling gouramis in. I wanted one because they look nice and pur like kittens. The other ... maybe I could convince if done right...