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Author Topic: Pet Stop in MQT  (Read 8351 times)
ThatCollegeReefer
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« on: January 04, 2010, 01:21:27 AM »

Hello All,

Just to let you know we here at the Pet Stop are on UPMMAS! Sorry to see that a member had a bit of a rough time with the handling of the fish... we all have our off days.  My apologies! 

I was wondering what you would like to see in our store, epecially in the way of certain live stock and dry goods.  We have been really trying hard in the past year or so to improve our salt water selection of both live stock and dry goods.  Just within the last month we started ordering from another salt water wholesaler, A&M Aquatics out of Lansing, MI.  I just placed an order today so look for some fun stuff coming into the store this week, livestock that we normally dont carry!  Previously all we had to order from was APET Inc. which supplies much of our freshwater and small animals. They are a good generalist but lacking in good SPS and rarer LPS and fish.

I was hoping this thread could serve as a way to get to know your clientele as well as their needs and wants.  If you would like to see more of a particular item, coral or fish in our store let us know! Its much easier to stock something when we know there is a want then guessing which of the 10 fairy wrasses on our list will appease the public eye! Also if you know of a wholesaler you would like to see us use we are always open to new ideas.  We will do our best to meet your needs!

-Josh   Cool
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2FarNorth
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« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2010, 05:03:37 AM »

Hi Josh!

  Let me be the first to welcome you! (probably cuz I'm one of the only ones that don't sleep!) I always enjoyed coming into the Pet Stop when we're in Marquette, A LFS in the U.P. is a rarity! Hopefully I'll be able to make it up there within the next month or so...

Anyways, You know what I'd love to see in a LFS for livestock? Clean up Crews! Stuff such as snails and what not, Astrea's Turbos, Ceriths, all the goodies..  Those are one thing that I normally get when I got to a store, I was never really a big fish guy, although the normal ones like the FireFish and stuff are nice...

As for corals, I love to see Aquacultured livestock, frags and stuff, I rarely buy Wild colonies, I have, but rarely. I personally love to watch my frags grow out into colonies. This spring I may be in the market for some new coral (after the wife gets back to work) you may be hearing from me!!  Wink

Anywho, welcome to the boards!

Jim
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Vauche
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« Reply #2 on: January 04, 2010, 01:37:30 PM »


Hello there.  This is very nice to see.

Some things that I would like to see, primarily on the dry good side of things.
 1) Rod's Food (a good quality frozen food)-I believe 3 different varieties (herbivore, carnivore ect.), the orange pack is the all everything basically (fish, corals, inverts).
 2) DT's line of products- Phytoplankton (good for the bugs= good for the mandarins, Pods-sum may consider culturing their own, and oyster eggs for those SPS fellows out there (Me!!).  These products are a little pricey but without shipping, OH BOY! (Phyto and pods are refridge, and oyster eggs frozen).
I'll caveat this by saying any good phyto or pods (tigger pods as an alternative) would be nice to see!
 3) I know I use the Tropic Marine Pro Salt mix although not sure what the market for this would be it's a bit pricey.
 4) Oh, a decent brand test kit (I use the salifert kits - ALK, Ca, Mg primarily but they make the basics as well plus several others)
 5) Maybe some vitamins like a selcon and vita-chem- these are generally well thought of in the reef community

As for live stock
 1) I will definitely second the clean up crew, who can't use more snails (although the price here is important $2-4 for one snail is a little absurd.
 2) As for other livestock, this is hard to be specific.  My taste change everytime I enter a store, but variety is always something that brings me in to look, and you never know!  A good mix a aggressive and non-aggressive is important!
 3) Not live stock per-se, but concerning livestock some kind of guarantee (even if its 48hrs or something).  Idea, must bring in fish and must bring in water sample from tank or no go. As an idea one place I go does a 7 day (I believe) 1/2 price guarantee.  Basically it's pretty hard to kill a healthy fish in less than a day (and no jumpers aren't covered!) without severe neglect.
 4) Not sure what the SPS market would be like, most I know are into softies/LPS but any SPS up here and you have the market to yourself.

Ok, so to the nitty-gritty.  Price does play a role.  I don't mind and I understand that I will pay more at a local store for dry goods, the convenience is worth the extra price to me.  However, when things start getting into the 3-4X internet prices it gets difficult to justify.

Well again, this is extremely nice to see.  I appreciate the fact that you are looking for input as to what we would like to see.  It would be extremely nice to be able to go to a "local" (I'm not that local) store and get what I need at a reasonable price!
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2FarNorth
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« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2010, 03:32:09 PM »

Sheesh! That's what I get for trying to answer on 4 hours of sleep!!...

I really like the Rod's food suggestion.... the closest retailer is GreenBay... and as much as I like our homemade fish food, (just don't over feed!)  I still like the Rod's....Something to look into!

I think Vauche had alot of great points, and as he stated, price is a killer... we had what seemed to be a start of a good fish store in Iron Mountain, and I really think price was pretty much the end of it (the store), and the hobby as a whole, for our area... This really is a great hobby, but alot of people were turned off on the 'extreme costs'. It doesn't need to cost a fortune to get into reefin'...

And something else I thought of on the Drygoods area, emergency type products, such as "Polyfilter" and stuff like that, Not sure if you carry any, but I drove 2 hours to Rhinelander for some one day, 1 hour to Marquette would be much easier!!!  Wink

Honestly I don't remember much about the saltwater section, I do remember some corals in that 120, that was about it... I really need to make it up there one of these days...
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ThatCollegeReefer
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« Reply #4 on: January 05, 2010, 12:01:34 AM »

Hello again! Thanks for all the suggestions so fast!

Clean up crews - we generally at all times have quite a few mexican turbos and black turbos running around as well as blue leg hermits (2.99 and 1.99 respectively) we carry a few more things randomly or by request.  With our new wholesaler I am trying to make $1 clean up crew a realitly ASAP as well as more diversity.  Right now we are currently maintianing our own macro algaes including sawtoothe calupra, blade calupra, cheato, and helmidea. We currently have our 120 reef which is getting more and more packed packed with coral everyday.  Just added a frag rack to frag a few things here and there. Additionally we have a 8 gallon biocube we keep smaller, fragile frags in and a 30 gallon that we keep a lot of LPS, inverts and softies in.  Just this week we added another light to our 60 gallon tank so now we can offer cured live rock, more macros and lots of space for softies!  I would say that 65-95% of our corals are aquacultured at any one time and we are trying to keep some for fragging ourselves.  We are try to order aquacultured/farm-raised but you both mentioned price and sometimes its just not worth it. An excellent example would be perc clowns.  The store can order farm raised fish for $12-14 bucks normally but the wild-caught or unknown orgin fish typically come in for $6-7.  Thats wholesale pricing as well. 

On the dry goods note it really comes down to me trying to find a dang wholesaler with decent prices that is willing to come to MQT. We would be more then happy to order from the individual companies but most of time we can't meet their minimum order (its really hard to order $1000 of marineland filters @ $10 a piece when you only have room on the shelves for 10 of them).  This forces us to go through that i call re-wholesalers who buy in bulk and offer many different product lines.  We are constantly trying to reduce cost, but our geographic location is our biggest detriment as i am sure that you both have found out for yourselves.  Finding new wholesalers is an area that we are definently open too. 

I will be checking out the rest of your suggestions in the future. I would really like to have our store be a beakon in the snowstorm of the UP!

Thanks again!
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ThatCollegeReefer
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« Reply #5 on: January 05, 2010, 12:07:18 AM »

Also we are always happy to share our livestock lists with interested people.  Everyweek we order from APET on Wednesday and it comes in the next day.  The list is available upon request, just email me and I will hit you up with the link.  I can get you that weeks list after noon every tuesday.  A&M is more sparatic, but never the less I will be happy to share when we are ordering!  $500 worth of new corals coming into the store tomorrow with more thursday! email - jfosdick@nmu.edu
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ThatCollegeReefer
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« Reply #6 on: January 06, 2010, 08:39:03 AM »

So as far as the frozen is conserned... starting Thursday we will be carring Lifeline frozen foods, PE Mysis 4oz flats and DT's Reef diet.  Still working on the rest of the DT line, but it is a start. Also looking into Rod's.
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Vauche
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« Reply #7 on: January 07, 2010, 11:39:13 AM »


Very nice, PE mysis.  I don't use it but a lot of people swear by it!

DT's reef diet?  Is this the oyster eggs?  That would be pretty sweet!!

Have you ever considered a small plumbing section?  Say a couple sizes of bulkheads (1",2" ect) or so.  I know when I needed some I ended up ordering on-line nobody sells them around here and couldn't find exactly what I was looking for anywhere else (I didn't know what I was doing at the time).

I'm not sure if I've ever seen them there but do you sell any T-5 size bulbs?  This might be nice, particulary the UVL or ATI brands (good lamps with nice par). Or can you get them if one needs them?  The bright side, one needs new ones every year!

I'm still trying to think of things.  The above are just suggestions some better than others! Grin
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fishcrazy
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« Reply #8 on: February 13, 2010, 08:02:54 AM »

This is AWESOME!  I agree with all of the suggestions made so far.  I have been in need of sprucing up my clean up crew for quite some time and the frozen food at the pet store here is not anything I'd write home about.  I'd like to add silversides to that list as well.  My anemone's love them!
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2FarNorth
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« Reply #9 on: February 14, 2010, 08:28:56 PM »

I finally got up there yesterday! Scored my six-line, a firefish, and some hermits!

Nice to meet you Josh! I wish I wasn't in a hurry near the end there, we were heading to the wifes sisters for dinner... Time really flew bye, as it was we were in there almost 45 minutes!

I still would love to sit down and talk more about the hobby, and the retail side of it also!
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shanbanansreef
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« Reply #10 on: April 21, 2010, 10:06:37 AM »

RODS FOOD!
In the last two days I have been in contact with the RODS food company and planning to place an order for the store. There are 8 different types of the food. Which ones would you like too see?? Please let me know as soon as possible so I can make an order. Rodsfood.com has a list of the types of food with a detailed description of contents.

Thanks
- Shana

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Vauche
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« Reply #11 on: April 21, 2010, 11:09:58 AM »


I use the original formula (orange). 

I'm sure if you got the original, the herivore and maybe coral blend you would be pretty good to start out.
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crabyman75
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« Reply #12 on: April 25, 2011, 07:14:12 PM »

Where are u guys didn't know there was a lfs in Marquette give me a direction and you've got a bigtime customer!  I buy on line or drive to rhinelander right now, Marquette would be great and don't mind paying extra if it's local!  I agree with the other guys clean-up crews, LIVE SAND!!! real stuff not the bagged junk, get some and aqua culture the bagged stuff with it!  Would like 50lbs if u can get it, u say u have chaeto? I need some let me know if u still have it and I will be down tomorrow.  thanks
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Vauche
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« Reply #13 on: April 27, 2011, 08:58:47 AM »

Crabyman,

Look under vendor experience tab in the main menu.  There is a list of local and not so local (WI) pet stores complete with addresses and phone numbers and a brief discription of what you can find at each in terms of fish stuff.  It might be a little out of date as some shops have closed or such but it has been accurate in my experience.

Beyond that all I can say about where the Pet Stop is, is that it is by the Shopko and Family Video.
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crabyman75
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« Reply #14 on: May 01, 2011, 04:03:27 PM »

Thanks Vauche, appreciate the info. have u been there?  Do they know what their doing?  The new owner in Painsdale (just about the oddest place to find a LFS, when there are virtually none other then them in the whole of the U.P.) is trying but I don't think she knows a whole lot about salts and the livestock is suffering for it.  Bought a long spined urchin there a couple weeks ago and tested the water, nitrate was off the charts!  He's amazingly doing well but for the first week did nothing but stick to the top of the tank had to feed him algae pellets (just dropped them on his spines and held on to it till he grabbed it) and is now regaining his health.  She has asked for my help but Painsdale is a good 35 minutes from my place so it's not like i can get there everday.  There must have been 4 dead anemones in her tanks (very insufficient lighting for them not to mention water quality, and a few dead fish.  I hate to see that.  Anyways let me know about the place and if you've been there, thanks.
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