This post is for my fellow tropical fish hobbyists.
I spent a little over an hour today visiting tropical fish stores in Chiang Mai. The pet stores are all located on a couple of streets. Three are just down the road from my hotel and the largest group is about 1km away.
Whilst there are differences between each of the stores, most tend to have glass display tanks and also plastic vats. The vats tend to hold goldfish and koi whereas the tanks also hold a variety of tropical fish.
There isn’t a wide variety of fish species available. In addition to the ever present goldfish and koi, most just have bread and butter species such as Tiger Barbs, livebearers, Zebra Danios, some barbs, Angelfish and a few tetra species. I didn’t see any species that we can’t get for Noah’s Ark, although there were some species that we choose not to carry (such as Pacu and Flowerhorns).
Video of the display tanks in one of the shops
Most of the stores only had small aquariums available for purchase (up to about 10 gallons), although one store had a selection of larger tanks. Many of the filters available were air-powered sponge filters or other small filters. I didn’t see many hang-on-back power filters, although there were a few of the smaller sizes. One store had canister filters available, but they don’t seem to be common.
What surprised me most was that most of the stores did not have any Bettas for sale. Considering that the basic Betta splendens originates from Thailand, I thought I would see more. Only two of the stores had Bettas – both being just down the road from my hotel. The Bettas were displayed in glass bottles and were much shorter-finned than the type we have in the hobby.
Here is a compilation of photos taken in the fish stores today: