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Hey guys,

Did a bit of searching this forum before posting this so I wasn't bringing up the same issues. I understand there has been alot of threads relating to the prices some pet shops charge for fish. I also understand that alot of this relates to the fact that as citizens of this great nation we unfortunately are faced with having the highest average cost of living in the world. During my searching of this forum and monsterfishkeepers.com i couldn't believe the discrepencies in the prices we charge eachother. I recently bought 6 Peacock Bass Monocular from trk18 (Trev) for a price that was pretty cheap when compared to other breeders in South East QLD (thanks Trev!) However on monsterfishkeepers a bloke in Singapore was selling 5 PBass of different breeds and between 6 and 10 inches long for $120 for the lot! There was also recently a post on here a guy was selling Red Tail Catfish for 650 bucks. Another man in Singapore on monsterfishkeepers was selling one that was 10 inches long for $45, couldn't sell it and reduced it to $35, unbelievable. This post is in no way having a go at the breeders here, i'm merely questioning why the hell are our (prestige) fish so bloody expensive in relation to prices overseas.

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Because it's soooooo much easier getting fish overseas. Also because they have so many more mass breeders, and the cost of breeding en mass is so much cheaper. Guppies in Vietnam cost 20 cents per pait, and those are already fancy guppies. Goldfish are 3-4 dollars a pair, the really fancy ones are maybe $10 at most. But this is all about the ease at which stuff are procured and/or breed. Flowerhorns actually cost pretty much the same. Good quality is good quality, and because of the international market the price has to be relatively constant. At least the one good enough to ship overseas, which would be most.

So yeah, it's a combination of high cost of breeding + harder to import that drives prices up in the Aussielands.

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Because it's soooooo much easier getting fish overseas. Also because they have so many more mass breeders, and the cost of breeding en mass is so much cheaper. Guppies in Vietnam cost 20 cents per pait, and those are already fancy guppies. Goldfish are 3-4 dollars a pair, the really fancy ones are maybe $10 at most. But this is all about the ease at which stuff are procured and/or breed. Flowerhorns actually cost pretty much the same. Good quality is good quality, and because of the international market the price has to be relatively constant. At least the one good enough to ship overseas, which would be most.

So yeah, it's a combination of high cost of breeding + harder to import that drives prices up in the Aussielands.

Totally agree, in asian, breeders don't need to pay for heater or electricity, can get a man to do all water changes at 300/ month in some countries, can get all live fish food at cheap price, and even can pump water from the river to their concrete tanks, some even do not have tank, just pond, or floating ponds in river. Then, when exported, only the highest quality ones are exported to get highest benefit. And we have to pay many types costs of license, transport, tax, wages, etc for everything including fish, food, declorine, etc...

most of all, the OZ market is so small to get big number to even the cost, I hope it make sense.

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Wonder what guppies are worth in Europe....or Alaska?

I don't think prices are too bad in Australia for fish at pet shops.....if you consider what has gone into bringing them up to a sale friendly level. Then you have to consider that shops need to run a business not a charity and pay staff and their bills. I doubt there would be much made out of fish at all...probably more in other "non-living" things.

Simple rule is - can't afford a hobby you get out of it or not start in the beginning! You would probably need 10- 15 grand a year minimum to have a decent tank setup.

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Like majority of threads there are some excellent contributions and some atrocious ones.

Procull- wasn't whinging at all mate, just questioning. Knew that there would be atleast one boofhead with a reply like yours, thanks for your 'contribution.'

Brisxr6t, not questioning the prices of shops mate, as they have overheads to cover and profits to make. More the prices of fish in general, and moreso the prices of fish that are considered premium for lack of a better word.

Like i said guys, not knocking anyone for selling fish at these prices and i have and will be 100% happy to pay them. But look at the difference in price that i stated in my fist post. It's huge and that's why i'm questioning it. For those that have given valuable input, thanks.

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The high prices are for fish you mentioned that are classed as "exotics" and thats exactly why there hard to come by and costly. Our natives are cheaper for us purely because there native to here unlike exotics. But overseas exotics to us are native to them and easy to come by.

Really simple when you think about it.

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Keegan013 that's true in a lot of cases mate. But neither Peacock Bass or Redtail Catfish are native to Singapore. Both are South American natives. Like the other guys have said it must just be because they are harder to get hold of here. Just thought someone might have some detail about why, whether it be our government charging more to import them then the Singapore goverment, etc.

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It's because you can't import the fish to Australia legally.. Anything smuggled in costs $$. Even the ones you can, in countries like Asia it's a numbers game, they buy and sell more to a larger market and don't need to set as high a price to cover costs.

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Actually, a guy in Europe has to pay 15 euros for a single endler. @_@ Crazy. But he lives in the middle of nowhere, and apparently getting livebearers there is hard because they are less resilient and less manage to actually get there.

As for native and exotic fish, it is indeed true that bought as a native, it's usually cheaper than when it's an exotic. However as time goes by enough are exported and enough people breed them overseas for them not to be 'exotic' anymore, and the price goes down again. Hence why stuff like Peacock Bass or Redtail Catfish are cheaper in Singapore, not just because the ease of import from South America, but also because Asian countries do breed them now, so even if they are not breed in Singapore (which I'm sure they are), it's still easy to get them anyways, moving from one Asian country to another. Going from Malaysia to Singapore for example, takes a few hours by boat at certain points.

Anyways, yeah. :P

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G'day mickjohnson86,

Many people forget (and I am just as guilty of this at times) that people new to the hobby do not always know the ins and outs of the hobby. Of course I don't know all that much either, however there are some very helpful and knowledgeable people here that will offer a hand or advice at the drop of a hat (or thread).

As for the topic on hand, it's been covered by others already. If the fish are not on the Allowable Import list, then they are illegal to import in to Australia. So they are smuggled in. I do not know if my recollection is correct, but it used to be, if you were caught smuggling fish, you faced a fine of up to $110,000 and/or up to 10 years in prison. Fines and prison terms may have changed.

Customs foils fish-smuggling attempt

So smuggled fish tend to be expensive. Some times there is a middle man (an on-seller) involved, as the people smuggling fish in don't sell direct to the public. So there is some one else looking for their cut, which increases the price of the fish. You will also find that the first couple of locally bred generations will be expensive as well as people look to recoup their initial layout. After a couple of years, prices may start to come down as certain fish become wide spread in the hobby. We saw this with Geos, and are seeing this with some L's now.

Other smuggled fish hold their price as they are unable to be bred locally, or are only bred in small numbers so are highly sought after and maintain a high market price.

If they are legally Allowed Imports, well...

No fish are allowed to be exported in to Australia directly from South America. So they are either exported from country of origin to Germany or some where like Singapore or Thailand. They are supposed to spend two weeks in quarantine overseas, but only at select facilities and with exporters approved by AQIS. Then they are quarantined in Australia for one, two or three weeks depending on the type of fish. E.g. guppies and bettas for one week, cichlids for two weeks and goldfish for three weeks. At every step in the chain, people are looking to get paid, there are fees to pay and associated costs to recoup. So a fish at an Australian wholesaler may already be more expensive for a LFS to buy, than what people pay on forums or at markets overseas.

Edited by pk333

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I think you answered the question in your first post

as citizens of this great nation we unfortunately are faced with having the highest average cost of living in the world.

$35 in Singapore could probably buy ~10 meals in Singapore with change to pay the bills.

If Australians had to breed and raise a p.bass to 10 inches to make $35 (about 3 meals?) who would bother?

That is a lot of effort for $35 which you could make in 1-2 hours of work...

For example a Sales Assistant in Australia averages AU$16.60/hr while the same job in Singapore will only pay an average AU$5.13/hr.

So if the 'seller' was a sales assistant in Singapore, $35 is almost equivalent to an entire days wage, if he sold 6 a week he could quit his job.

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Asian aquarium store retail prices of some Australian native fish produced there follows:

Praecox rainbow 4cm - $1.80, Lungfish 10cm - $45, Jardini Saratoga 15cm - $8 . High end retail

Don't knock moving to other countries, just for the fish. I did this twice for ten years and have kept species that don't even get published or identified!!

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They also use child labour in Asia, so if you want to work for $1/wk I am sure the fishes would be a hell of alot cheaper.

Actually, not really so much with fish. :P Most of the breeders have to be reaallly experienced and really trusted, especially when you deal with hundred-dollars fish. :3

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Its more of the rarity and supply. Sometimes price are equivalent to a brandnew small car, but people still wants (demand) it as they are collectors and later on breed them to get their money back. I'm with you on the other forums pricing, but thats totally different here. Even what they have is fascinating. I used to own a colony of piranhas, snakeheads, and exotics turtles a few years ago outside aus, but can't do it here.

hopefully those who own rare and exotic species share their pups and frys to us who can only afford reasonably priced fish. Sometimes its just a matter saving up to get what you want.

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Heya Mick...different markets....quality and availability are pretty much the price setters in my eyes...if you can get it...and you know there will be more of it available even after these ones are sold...people wont pay much..its easy to get..competiton will be greater...if its hard to get...and of good quality...people talk dead presidents :)...availability is based on ease of getting fish wether by legal or illegal means...as mentioned if your in the middle of nowhere and no one is breeding and its what your looking for...its going to cost....if your goverment has difficult laws in place that restrict the importing of certain fish even though these fish are fine to have in your tanks...then yep..up goes the prices(but down it goes once again if there is a good internal supply)...plus the customer market...is the aquarium trade big or small in the countries market...so is it a common hobby or a bit more of a specialist thing....specialty costs..

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At the end of the day, we live in Oz, so we have the choice to pay the asking price or not:)

Having said that, I would happily part with $1k for a foot long Guppy:)

If a fish takes your fancy, buy it.

Money no issue:)

Just be thankful that there are alot of breeders out there doing their best to keep down prices.

Without them, you'll be paying 5-10 times more in a few years time:)

Merry Christmas pepps :P

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Aye.

Also.

Be thankful that we have the fish that we have, after all we're lucky that we still get to keep many of the fish that was here before the importation crack down. :P Would have been worse if the government decided to ban these fish completely.

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Money is no issue for me either, but you'd have to be just plain dumb to pay $35 for a 2.5cm M. auratus. And yes, I'm not making that price up.

I suppose, some stores/people are out there hoping to rip people off to make a buck, rather than gaining a customer base via reputation. Of course, store prices need to cover expenses and I don't begrudge that at all!

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I dont think its "ripping" people off to make a buck...yeah the price might be high..to you..someone who knows they can get it cheaper....you can still choose to buy...if you do your research and know what your talking about then yep you should be able to find the value....you cant base a fish's value on what you see on a forum...this is where people sell at less than wholesale in a lot of cases....we're pretty lucky to have forums that supply fish we enjoy at a cheap price......bit like having a chocolate forum that sold mars bars for 20c.....one gets fat the other gets multiple tank syndrome....

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That's why I keep Rainbows, a hell of a lot cheaper here than O/S, especially when you can go out a catch your own. That's something you cichlid boys can't do, unless you want to keep illegal Tilapia or scanky feral Convicts.

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