A: We ship via USPS Priority mail and Fedex Monday through Thursday. Priority Mail is $19.99 up to $74.99. Orders over $75.00 can be shipped for FREE via 1-3 day Priority Mail.
You can also select FedEX Priority Overnight for your order. FedEX is a Flat Rate based for your state. You can check the price to use FedEX from this chart. https://www.tampabaycichlids.com/pages/fedex-rate-chart
Q: Shipping days
A: We ship Monday through Thursday with Fedex Overnight and Monday through Thursday with Priority Mail. "Overnight shipping" refers only to the method by which the package carrier will deliver your fish.
Q: How do you prepare my order for shipping? Will they live three days in the box?
A: Your fish will be professionally bagged with oxygen, an ammonia remover, and a mild sedative in a heavy duty, professional fish packing bag. We use a non-toxic, recycled packing material to cushion and prevent bags from moving around much in shipping and it also acts as an adsorbent in case a small amount of water leaks during shipping. When necessary, we add heat packs to your order to keep them warm if they are traveling through colder areas. The sedative we use may affect different fish in your order in different ways. Some fish may look and act normal as soon as they are put into your tank while others will be very sluggish and almost completely sedated. All fish should be back to their normal state by the next morning. Your fish can easily survive the three-day trip or even longer as long as the post office or FedEX keep them indoors during the trip and out of the cold or hot weather. One trick some of my customers use if no one can get them inside right away is to leave a cooler on the front porch with a inside dimension or at lease 16 inches long and 12 x 12 inches wide and tall. You can leave it near the front door with a message on top for the UPS driver to leave the fish inside.
Q: How are your fish measured?
A: We measure all fish tip of nose to tip of tail unless stated otherwise in the description.
Q: I have existing fish in my tank, I am worried they will attack the new fish. What should I do?
If you have fish that are already established in your tank that may be aggressive towards their new tank mates the time to address this is right before adding your new fish. In most cases, you can do a minor rearranging of the tank to confuse the established fish. You can put the rocks, driftwood, etc. back to suit you the next day. Open bags after they have acclimated for temperature and pour through a net over a bucket or sink. Do not add any bag water to your tank! If you have established fish, take the fish in the net and slide it down the front glass to the bottom of the tank and then release it. The fish in your tank are used to food coming from the top so releasing the new ones near the bottom won’t draw as much attention in the tank.
Q: If you have a problem with your order.
A: We inspect all fish prior to shipping to ensure they are healthy and free of defects. We photograph all orders prior to packing in the box so we can reference it if we need to. Sometimes during the shipping process, unusual issues may occur that can affect the health of the fish. If you have an issue or have lost a fish in shipping, contact me as soon as you have taken care of your other fish. (Within 2 hours of being delivered please) Our e-mail is: firstname.lastname@example.org. Please provide a clear picture of the fish in question when you contact us. It will also be helpful for you to provide me with your order number (top of invoice) when you e-mail us as it makes it much quicker to look up your order. We guarantee at a minimum to provide credit for a future order but we normally replace any problem fish with a new one at no cost to you. If we ship a replacement, it will be shipped via Priority Mail. Although there should never be any reason for a customer to file a chargeback on a credit card, or Paypal, if you feel the need to go that route this is our procedure for handling them. If you dispute a payment to us, any charges that are incurred will be invoiced to you. We require all items purchased on that transaction returned to us, there will be no exceptions to this no matter how the dispute is settled with the exception of you withdrawing the dispute. If we do not reach an agreement regarding a dispute, the dispute is found in your favor, and all items have not been returned to us, you will be invoiced for all original charges. In addition, any fee's incurred from the dispute and a $25.00 administrative fee for invoices under $100.00 or a $45.00 administrative fee for orders over $100.00 will be applied. Any unpaid invoice will be charged a 2.5% a month late fee for the first 90 days and on or after day 91 the invoice will be considered to be in default and will be turned over to credit reporting agencies, our collection agency, or may be filed in a lawsuit at the Hillsborough County Clerk of Court in Tampa, FL.
Q: What should I do before I order my fish?
A: It is always best to research the fish you are buying to make sure you provide them the best environment possible. Feel free to e-mail me if you have any questions. email@example.com
Q: I just received my fish and they do not look like the pictures on the website.
A: This is why it's important for you to do your research prior to ordering. Most pictures are taken with adult fish who are showing their maximum color and size potential. Any fish that was just shipped will be stressed. Allow a week or more for the fish to acclimate to their new environment - they will color up as they mature if they are supposed too.
Q: Do you ship to Alaska, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico?
A: Yes. We ship to Alaska via FedEx Overnight. You will need to contact us and we will get a shipping quote for you. As a rule, FedEX overnight is not that expensive based on the fact so many time-critical parts are shipped to Alaska for the fishing, mining, and oil industries.
Hawaii requires you to jump through some hoops to get fish from the mainland. They require you to get an agricultural permit to import fish. You can find more info about that here: http://hdoa.hawaii.gov/pi/pq/travel-shipping-information/importing-animals-to-hawai%CA%BBi-from-the-u-s-mainland/
We ship to Puerto Rico via USPS and usually takes two to three days. We only ship Priority mail to Puerto Rico.
Q: Do you raise your own fish?
A: We raise approximately half the fish we sell. We do purchase fish from a few "trusted" breeders to round out our inventory. There is a few fish we offer on regular basis that we pick up from a local fish importer.
Q: What kind of water are your fish raised in?
A: We produce and keep our fish in well water that has been aged and has a pH of 7.9-8.0 and a temperature of 80 degrees. We have approximately 200 ppm hardness with the vast majority of that calcium hardness. This works for approximately 98% of the tap water in the US.
Q: What acclimation procedure should I do when my fish arrive?
A: We only recommend one method and 20 years of experience doing what we do proves it works. Float the unopened bags in the aquarium for 10-15 minutes to acclimate the fish to the tank’s temperature. Open bags after they have acclimated for temperature and pour through a net over a bucket or sink. Do not add any bag water to your tank! I can not stress enough, this is the best acclimation procedure to use and the only one we will guarantee your fish with.
Q: Can you get me a fish that is not on your list?
A: I know and deal with many fish farmers, fish wholesalers, and importers. If it's available, there is a good chance I can make a few phone calls and find it. Contact me.
Q: Where are you located?
A: We are in Wimauma, FL, just outside of Tampa. We are a working fish facility so we do not keep regular hours. At this time we have suspended any visits to our our hatchery for the safety of our employees.