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Old 05-21-2003, 11:29 PM   #1
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Where do you find your best deals!

Welcome to all of the new members..

Since we are all in somewhat close proximity to one another, I thought I would like to start a thread listing the LFS's in the area that offer what you would think are the best deals locally.

Note: No online references please.

The best places I have found are:

Atlantis Aquariums formerly Bio-Reef on Atlantic Blvd and Hodges in J'ville...

Lets face it. All you would want from a LFS.

When you walk in, you know you are in the right place if you find yourself gazing into a 750 Gal show tank that sits right inside the door. Then if that isn't enough, to the right, there is a 900 gal lagoon pond housing some impressive Sharks, Rays and Grouper... It's like visiting the islands.

They have a wide selection of Saltwater and Freshwater Fish and a large selection of Corals. They also have LR (cured and un-cured) and LS out of tanks. The LR is fairly priced, and you can hand pick it; usually Fiji and Tonga Branch.

They have a good selection of tanks and accessories. Light bulbs are in abundance and are URI, Ushio, Hagen and Coralife. I also noticed that they have a wide array of additives, supplements, and you can get your RO/DI water as well as mixed Saltwater...The customer service far superior and in no comparison to any LFS in J'ville and very knowledgeable.

Aqua Zoo has 2 locations in J'ville one in Mandarin on San Jose and one on Beach Blvd just before the Intracoastal.
They also have a good selection of Saltwater and Freshwater Fish and a small selection of corals.. They tend to be a little higher priced. The LR is Florida and Gulf Aquacultured and sometimes Fiji. The prices are a little steep also, but you can pick what you want. The Large selection of tanks and accessories makes for a good place to get ideas and compare. They also sell just about every kind of light bulb for aquaria.
The customer service is a hit and miss and in my case has been more of a miss. The knowledge is there, except when they are open. Go there with knowledge and research.

Aquatecture Aquatics, Inc. is located on SW Archer Rd. in Gainesville.
My trip down there was not a spectacular experience however, they are going through a remodel, and the stock is at bare minimum right now. According to the Gen. Mgr., they will be back in full swing by July. They offer a what I saw to be a good selection of Saltwater Fish and a small amount of Freshwater Fish, mainly African and species of Cichlids. I noticed that they had a somewhat diverse selection of Corals and very good deals on them. One of the things I found that was interesting, is they also sell Reptiles. They have the bare minimums for maintenance accessories and dry goods, but I expect that to increase once the remodel is complete. I am very happy with the atmosphere and to me, that is very important. They will be getting return business from me.

Sorry to make this actually a review, but I thought it would be helpful.

Happy Shopping
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Old 06-21-2003, 11:16 AM   #2
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Bump----We have quite a few new additions and no replys nor posts..Hmmm anyone have a favorite LFS?
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Old 06-21-2003, 06:52 PM   #3
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well my problem is this... I live in gainesville, and Aquatexture is the only LFS that has quality goods or exotic goods, and being a freshwater aquarium person I am screwed. Basically the remodeling of aquatexture is now aiming for full saltwater.

Aquatropics is another LFS which has a lot of potential... only if they replaced everyone on that staff thats lazy and dumb. Their products are of the least quality, fish are at point of death and usually do die in about a day unless you're lucky.

Petsmart is a nice store and do carry decent quality fish but... nothing very exotic nor out of the ordinary. I wanted river rocks or something for my cichlid tank but they are all fake, and I am one not to have anything at all fake! Lighting is just the standard flourescent (which supports nothing), etc.

So yeah... for those of you who like salt then Aquatexture is the place, but for those of you who are into freshwater.. pray for the worse-then-warehoused fishies in aquatropics.
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Old 06-28-2003, 09:36 PM   #4
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Hi Tim,
I live in Orange Park and have just recently started to get back into the hobby. I have an 80 gallon tank that currently has an 8 year old clown, clean up crew (ordered online) and some LR (gulf-view).

I have purchased fish at Aqua Zoo and Arlington Aquarium (I don't think they are around any more). Sadly, I murdered some fish due to ignorance. That was before I started checking out sites like this. I recently checked out Atlantis and liked the quality of the live stock much better than the Zoo. I also checked out a pretty bad place called Fish Mania on Beach.

I don't get much time to read all of these posts but I do try when I get the chance. Glad to see there are others around with the same questions.
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Old 06-29-2003, 10:19 PM   #5
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I live near Gainesville, as well. At this point, Aquatecture is the only LFS that I will go to in the area. (I only have saltwater tanks) They actually have a really good selection of corals and fish now. But, there is still some construction going on. Everytime I have entered Aquatropics, the "salespeople" tried to sell me stuff I didn't need. And the fish I bought have introduced disease into my tanks.

Tim, where is Atlantis? I might drive up to check it out one day.
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Old 06-29-2003, 10:44 PM   #6
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Altantis Aquariums is about 5 miles east of Regency Square Mall in a strip mall next to Ace Hardware. On the corner of Atlantic Blvd. and Hodges Blvd.

(904) 221-0770
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Old 06-29-2003, 10:59 PM   #7
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Welcome to Aquarium Advice. Good to see someone here that is close by.. Just to add to my first post, I shop at all of the fish stores in jax.. I have bought something from all of them. Was not always happy with all of them...

A quick note on LFS here, IMO best to least best are:

1. Atlantis Aquariums (Atlantic Blvd.) Good prices and selection FW & SW
2. Pet Emporium (Roosevelt Mall) Very small selection but good prices! FW & SW
3. Aqua Zoo (Beach and in Mandarin) Good selection but pricey (staff unfriendly)IMO FW & SW
4. Fish Factory (Nomandy Blvd.) Some deals on fish but not equipment. Double the cost. FW & SW
5. Fish Mania (Beach Blvd.)No selection most of the time. Mostly FW some SW
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Old 07-27-2003, 07:45 PM   #8
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I will review the Tallahassee options here soon!

This might be a good place for anyone to post that was looking for something unusual.

I hit at least three of the LFS every week (Drug use would have been so much easier!)

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Old 07-27-2003, 07:54 PM   #9
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(Drug use would have been so much easier!)
That's funny!!

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Old 08-12-2003, 08:41 PM   #10
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Found an awesome store in Navarre FL

Went to this place Emerald Coast Fish & Reptile off of 87 in Navarre. All I can say is WOW. The freshwater fish look incredible, the saltwater, they are rebuilding their fish stock, they lost a lot recently due to a a/c problem, but I was definetely impressed. They wont sell the fish for about a week after they get them, if the fish show any signs of sickness they wont sell them either, they dont pressure you to buy anything, just recommend what works for them, but are open to other points of views, very knowledgeable and friendly/personable staff, and the best part is THEY MATCH INTERNET PRICES!

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