Welcome to KC! If you want to see the best, there are two places in town. Unfortunately, they are on opposite sides of the city from each other.
The only place to look in South Kansas City (Overland Park/Lenexa/Olathe) is "Paradise Aquatics". They are located in the shopping complex at Metcalf and 119th street (in between price chopper and hobby lobby). They have the nicest selection and healthiest looking specimens. They are on the high side of price though, but worth it for the specimens they sell.
The other place I have yet to go to myself, but have heard nothing but positive comments on it. It is called "The Reef House" and located at or near 39th Street and Main St. This is in downtown Kansas City Missouri. I hear they have a nice selection of corals and fish. I don't know about their prices though. I plan on going there tomorrow myself and loitering for a while.
I hope this helps you out some. Again, welcome to KC and I hope you enjoy your time here.
Sean (Lenexa KS)
I just wanted to let you know that I visited 'The Reef House' (39th and Main) today and, no offense to anyone, was not all that impressed. Today there was not a very good selection of fish or corals, very high prices, and the tanks were not, in my opinion, well kept.
If I were you, I would go to 'Paradise Aquatics' or 'Mission Pets'. Missiont Pets is located on Johnson Drive and Nall in downtown Mission Kansas. They have a very nice saltwater collection.
You could visit Paradise Aquatics then hop on I-35 North to Johnson Drive and go East until you see the store. If you come to the Mission Mall, you've gone too far East.
I hope this helps and you find your fish.
Mission pets is way overpriced IMO. I recommend The Reef House (Although I have not been there lately) or Fish World in Blue Springs. The Reef House and Fishworld are the only two places we shop at. I have not had good experiences with the others.
As always, opinions vary. I much prefer Reef House and Fish World out in Blue Springs. (7 hwy and 40 hwy) I don't get to Paradise much, but they do have big fish.
As far as selection at Reef House goes, I think their shipments come in Mondays and Tuesdays, but don't quote me. Fish World has tangs on sale this week. It's a bit of a drive, but usually worth it for me.
I personally avoid Mission Pets. Last time I was in (about 6 months ago), I saw some things that just about broke my heart, and they weren't a one-day kind of thing. I haven't been back since. Things might have changed... but I doubt it. But that's just me. I think they're awfully pricy, but again, I haven't been there in awhile.
Its been several months since I have been there too. So, it is quite possible things have changed. I just remember them having a large selection of things and back then, tanks looked clean and fish healthy. But, I would listen to those that have been there recently.
If you are looking for cheap fish, you won't find them any cheaper than PetCo. But, you take your chances on quality. Personally, I usually buy online from www.exoticfish.com. I wait until Jeff sends me a 'fish club special', order a few soft corals and a fish or two. I have never received a bad fish from him and my tank is stocked mostly with corals from his '9 for $99' special. To date, all of his corals are doing great!
Also to say for Paradise Aquatics... I was just there a week ago, and they have really cleaned up the place. The tanks use to look really dirty, (some still do, but nearly as bad) They seemed to have some good assortments in, and their pricing was better. So, I think they are trying to clean things up.
Fishworld is a good place to go. The Reef House is good, pending on what day you catch them. (if you catch them on day when the stock comes in). Every fish store is like that in some regard I guess.
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