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Old 07-17-2015, 09:37 PM   #21
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Mine were not, but they showed an interest. I had friends who were.
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Old 07-17-2015, 10:39 PM   #22
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I loved this one pet store. ( The Pet Boutique ) It had a single owner. He owned it & worked there with no help. I remember he had tanks in quarantine. He treated them with Methyl Blue. No fish could be purchased from a tank with blue water. Not until the fish were healthy again. I used it in my own aquarium @ times. The filter gradually cleared it. I don't know if it is still sold.
Now, in "SOME" stores today, & in the past, you see fish floating on the top, struggling to swim or being devoured by others & you can buy them along with anything else in the tank.
That store owner cared about quality & his customers. That is why people like myself kept coming back.
You guys just starting this hobby don't be discouraged. I am not, for one minute, saying there are not still some good quality stores out there.
These are stories of the past. Like the stories my mom & Dad told me about their lives. It is as much history as the information in school books. Just listen & appreciate how this hobby has progressed & save "your" stories for the next generation.
This is great. I love quality stores like this, not many left but I think we all know at least one.
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Old 07-17-2015, 11:48 PM   #23
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Both of my parents had friends that eventually opened up pet stores but it was my Grandparents who got me interested in fish. ( My parents were breeding dogs when I was born. ) Every time I would go to visit their place, I would run through the apartment to see the 7 1/2 gal tank with those beautiful Neon Tetras and assorted other fish. I eventually inherited that tank and stand ( I still have & use the stand today, 50 years later. Who says quality doesn't last? )
So I can throw out some oldies stuff for you all to reminisce with.
Metal framed tanks with slate bottoms held together with black tar.
Bubble up HOB filters. ( Thank you metaframe. )
Aquaking filters ( also the Aquamasters )
TFH magazine. ( The little one with the book inserts. )
FAMA magazine ( for those who aren't quite that old. )
Sodium Thiosulfate crystals. ( precurser to chlor-out)
Too many great medications that are, sadly, no longer available. ( ie snail rid, aquarisol, Chloramphenicol...)
Perfecto- lids
O'Dell tanks
Hang on aquarium heaters. ( I am still using some Supreme heaters I got 30 years ago. You just need to keep cleaning those contact points. )
Hush 1,2 & 3 air pumps ( Special mention to the Silent Giant air pump too. )
Supreme Dynamaster piston pumps ( regular and 12 volt.)
And for you older folks ( like me ) the Cosmic piston pump. ( I know it's around here somewhere. lol )
How's that for old stuff?

A couple years back, I had made some trips back to NJ ( where I came from) and visited a number of stores in the state. I did find 2 that were real "old world", old school hobbyist pet stores. In one store, the place was a little small but it was organized, the fish were beautiful and the owner knew his craft. I highly recommended that store for those looking for the big box experience with the home town touch. Prices were in line and the fish were worth every penny. ( I even brought some of his fish back with me to FL. )
The second store was dark, very crowded with merchandise, the tanks all had sponge or corner filters that looked like they had been in service for quite some time and had some algae growing in them. And NONE of that mattered when you saw the fish in those tanks. They were BEAUTIFUL!!!!! You could tell they had been cared for properly and were being housed properly to have such a great appearance. I took some of his fish home too. ( Thankfully, I didn't have many tanks set up yet or I would have bought back way too many fish. ) The owner was 3rd generation pet shop owner and really knew his stuff. So there are some hidden gems still out there. You just have to be willing to look for them.
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Old 07-18-2015, 08:46 AM   #24
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WOW, Andy, thanks for that !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
What a list ! I don't remember all the technical jargon, but I'm sure I would recognize most of the equipment, meds & books if I saw them.
For sure I remember the books full of things dreams are made of. I had a subscription to 1 & could hardly wait for my monthly magazine.
The 2nd aquarium store you spoke of, dark, crowed, etc., was much like the one I spoke about earlier.
Planted tanks.
Tanks full of plants for sale.
Fish in all these tanks plus more.
The store wasn't big, but even if crowed the sound was muffled, except for the conversations of the owner with his customers.
As you say, the fish were beautiful with many varieties.
Enjoy those little treasures you took home to Florida.
Thanks, Andy, for sharing that with us. It means a lot.
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Old 07-18-2015, 01:53 PM   #25
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WOW, Andy, thanks for that !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
What a list ! I don't remember all the technical jargon, but I'm sure I would recognize most of the equipment, meds & books if I saw them.
For sure I remember the books full of things dreams are made of. I had a subscription to 1 & could hardly wait for my monthly magazine.
The 2nd aquarium store you spoke of, dark, crowed, etc., was much like the one I spoke about earlier.
Planted tanks.
Tanks full of plants for sale.
Fish in all these tanks plus more.
The store wasn't big, but even if crowed the sound was muffled, except for the conversations of the owner with his customers.
As you say, the fish were beautiful with many varieties.
Enjoy those little treasures you took home to Florida.
Thanks, Andy, for sharing that with us. It means a lot.
Sure thing There's a curse sometimes, to have been around for so long. You get to compare what was then ( and no longer available) to what is today ( that may not be as good or effecient). Like most things built today, they are not made to last. For example, I've already replaced 3 heaters that were bought within the past 2 years and yet I have not had a mechanical failure on my 30 year old supremes. Any issues I've had, I've caused. But we have what we have so we need to adapt. I'll throw 1 more memory out there for you all: Undergravel Filters for Saltwater....the FLAT ones. This was what we had available before the raised molded ones came to being. ( Sorry if this congers up some nightmares for some of you. )

As for your LFS, I suggest you support it with all you got. Stores like that are getting harder and harder to find. We need to keep them around as long as possible so that we hobbyists have places that can supply our curiosity with answers and options. I only hope I am still around if the next wave of Mom & Pop shops make their appearance again and rise to the top.

I can't wait to read more posts on this topic.
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Old 07-18-2015, 03:55 PM   #26
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I am enjoying this too, Andy.
I am so happy I started this thread.
I wasn't sure there would be much interest but, I learned, I am not alone.
Right on ! Support those small local stores for sure !
Good talking to you.
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Old 07-18-2015, 04:26 PM   #27
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Oldest memory I have was my dad putting a baby Oscar with an angel in a glass bowl( now that you bring up glass bowls) as I recall at the age of 8 that the angel didn't last a day, I guess the Apple didn't fall far from the tree eh?


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Old 07-18-2015, 04:29 PM   #28
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Also one other nightmare you probably don't want to here was me and my brother putting shampoo in a tank of 15+..... How young and dumb were we good god lol


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Old 07-18-2015, 04:31 PM   #29
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I do go to a fish store not far from me that gives my daughter candy every time we go, very nice people and give me 4 packets of blood worms for 10 bucks. They know my name but I hardly know theirs. Nice peeps nonetheless.


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Old 07-18-2015, 06:20 PM   #30
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I do go to a fish store not far from me that gives my daughter candy every time we go, very nice people and give me 4 packets of blood worms for 10 bucks. They know my name but I hardly know theirs. Nice peeps nonetheless.


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Remembering a name is a gift. I don't have it. I am like you. The person, working in that store, had many names to remember. You had one & sometimes you couldn't remember it.

I'll never forget the name, Gilles, from the Pet Boutique. It closed years ago, but there are only a handful, of truly special people, who we are fortunate enough to meet in our life time. He was one.

Your daughter will never forget that candy. Something so simple may spark an interest in the hobby.

Thanks for sharing.
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