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Old 12-03-2012, 03:41 PM   #1
shiloh
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Default LFS in/around Tampa?

Hi, just wondering what fish stores and/or farms people frequent in the tampa area. I live near Marine Aquarium Warehouse and its pretty good, but definitely caters to saltwater. I've been otherwise unimpressed by the shops I've visited. Also, does anybody collect their own driftwood around here?
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Old 12-03-2012, 05:46 PM   #2
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Yull have a hard time beating Marine Warehouse, if you cant find what you are looking for there might has well buy online.
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Old 12-14-2012, 05:51 AM   #3
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Only LFS I have been to is Pet Wize near USF area. I found a guy in Brandon on craigslist that has a bunch of driftwood I will probably checkout his selection soon.
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Old 12-19-2012, 02:48 AM   #4
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Only LFS I have been to is Pet Wize near USF area. I found a guy in Brandon on craigslist that has a bunch of driftwood I will probably checkout his selection soon.
Pet Wize is a joke.
Since Gus left Nick has driven it downhill. They were great when they were Pet Mart and on Busch Blvd. The moved to 56th street and really started downhill. After they moved from there it really went down. I won't shop there. Creature Castle in Valrico is pretty decent. Nolans in Lakeland isn't bad either. It's under new ownership. Must say though I haven't been there in a while. Might hit it over Christmas vacation.
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Old 12-19-2012, 04:59 AM   #5
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Yeah I haven't bought anything from Pet Wize, only gone in a handful of times to see what kind of plants and fish they have. I am in New Tampa and to my knowledge no real LFS around here. I will be in Sarasota/Venice for a couple days to see family so I might have better luck down there.
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Old 05-07-2013, 01:11 AM   #6
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Check out Westside Aquariums... I'm there AT LEAST 2/weekly. I've been going to Paul (owner) since I was 13 (21 now)... Hes SUPER knowledgeable and if he doesn't have it then he can get it.... Let em' know Nico sent you....

3402 S Dale Mabry Hwy Tampa, FL 33629
(813) 839-4751
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Old 07-15-2013, 09:04 PM   #7
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Check out Westside Aquariums... I'm there AT LEAST 2/weekly. I've been going to Paul (owner) since I was 13 (21 now)... Hes SUPER knowledgeable and if he doesn't have it then he can get it.... Let em' know Nico sent you....

3402 S Dale Mabry Hwy Tampa, FL 33629
(813) 839-4751
I had a chance to stop by this store today and I was impressed by the owner's knowledge. I just mentioned lights and right away he mentioned Kelvin temps for plant growth and had quite a bit of info regarding LED fixtures. We talked about several different fish and how hardy or picky they can be and different kinds of food to feed them. Prices on lights, pumps, etc are lower than most retailers too. The downside is that he doesn't keep much in stock and has to get the equipment from the warehouse which takes a couple days. But if you don't mind waiting, I think you'll be hard pressed to find a better deal locally.
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Old 07-16-2013, 01:46 PM   #8
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I had a chance to stop by this store today and I was impressed by the owner's knowledge. I just mentioned lights and right away he mentioned Kelvin temps for plant growth and had quite a bit of info regarding LED fixtures. We talked about several different fish and how hardy or picky they can be and different kinds of food to feed them. Prices on lights, pumps, etc are lower than most retailers too. The downside is that he doesn't keep much in stock and has to get the equipment from the warehouse which takes a couple days. But if you don't mind waiting, I think you'll be hard pressed to find a better deal locally.
Sounds good! Does he stock plants?
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Old 05-09-2013, 01:12 AM   #9
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Don't buy driftwood. There are many places to gather. For example, the southwest end of the Howard Franklin bridge on the "causeway" has absolutely EPIC pieces of driftwood from tiny to GIANT , dump trucks full. Bring you a little saw and have at it. Look down on the back sides of mangrove shorelines And you will find all sorts of various driftwood that is typically old and often dry. Areas near the saltwater are your places to look for wood.
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Old 10-15-2013, 12:29 AM   #10
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Don't buy driftwood. There are many places to gather. For example, the southwest end of the Howard Franklin bridge on the "causeway" has absolutely EPIC pieces of driftwood from tiny to GIANT , dump trucks full. Bring you a little saw and have at it. Look down on the back sides of mangrove shorelines And you will find all sorts of various driftwood that is typically old and often dry. Areas near the saltwater are your places to look for wood.
So i found this place today. It is a good hunting ground for driftwood and i did get some pieces. You do need to get right into the mangroves, and to the shoreline. You're welcome to message me for more info.

I also wish i could have stayed longer. You see there's a lot of dubious activity going on down there, and frankly i don't recommend the site because of it. If i returned, it would be with a concealed carry no less.

When i pulled up i noticed several vehicles on the side of the road, and thought, well sure folks must just be fishing in the edge of the mangroves or something. One side of the road, was, the other side of the road it turned out (where there was better wood incidentially) contained random middle aged and older men wondering about the woods. No fishing rods, up to goodness knows what. Just standing there most of the time walking about....waiting.

Being a physician, i tend to talk to random strangers for better or worse. I got chatting to one of the guys as i was walking out with my arms full of wood, and eventually dropped the question, " what on earth is everyone doing here." His response was, you don't want to know what's going on here, although its not drugs. He also advised i got my wood and got out before i found myself in an uncomfortable situation/trouble. Needless to say i got the heck out of dodge.

I don't know if this is every day of the week or what. However, if there's a bunch of cars parked out there with random men wondering about, my warning is to watch out for yourself. Otherwise great driftwood prowl site, although know that there may be folks prowling you as much as you're prowling for driftwood. I think i have a good idea of what the site was all about, but i'll leave it off the public domain. Lets just say for a single, young male physician it was NOT the place i should have been this afternoon.
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Old 10-18-2013, 06:00 PM   #11
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collected on the Hillsborough river, rent or borrow a kayak to get to the good spots...
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Old 10-25-2013, 01:46 PM   #12
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collected on the Hillsborough river, rent or borrow a kayak to get to the good spots...
Which section of the river did you go on?
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Old 05-09-2013, 02:31 AM   #13
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That's good news. I've lived here and Tampa for years and didn't know about that area for driftwood.
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Old 05-21-2013, 04:13 AM   #14
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Thanks for the driftwood collecting site tip. I might check it out soon. The causeway stretches out far, and I may have limited time to look for the exact site you are referring to. Any additional "clues" on where to find the driftwood site you are referring to will be gladly appreciated.

I will post again once I find the site. Hopefully with pics.
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Old 05-31-2013, 11:55 PM   #15
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Don't you guys worry about salt content in driftwood from the bay? I am asking a serious question, because I would MUCH rather gather than buy (Pasco County, on the Gulf).
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