When I first started in this hobby many years ago I frequented a few local fish stores to pick the owners’ brains to better understand how they achieved success with their tanks. They acted like a coach, helping to guide me through any issues or problems I had with the tank, and also served as a source of inspiration.


Ok, fast forward to today. Yes, there are many retailers selling a wide variety of corals and fish online but they cannot match the level of service you can get at a LFS. And nothing beats seeing a coral live and in-person when you are in the buy mode.


Local Fish Stores


Local Fish Stores – Personalized Service

I live in Vermont and in my area there are not a lot of options when it comes to local fish stores. However, one store worth checking out is Green Mountain Coral in Waterbury Center, VT. I caught up with the owner, Matt Spaulding, who spoke about a number of things, including the personalized service he provides customers and his practice of using the equipment he sells, allowing him to stand behind the brands he stocks.



Overall, Matt is providing a personal concierge service to his customers they just can’t get via an online shop. Local fish stores are such an important part of the reef keeping ecosystem so please don’t forget to stop by and support the store in your area. And if you are ever in central Vermont, swing by Matt’s shop. He knows his stuff, has a great selection of corals and loves to talk reef.


If you are looking for additional insights and information, please explore my many other reef tank and SPS related articles as well as my book, A ReefBum’s Guide To Keeping an SPS Reef Tank: A Blueprint For Success. And you can see all of my reef tank videos online now as well as my Live HD Webcam.


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Happy reef keeping!