The Final Refit is coming this week
We are closing for our final refit Tuesday 14th & Wednesday 15th March. During these days all sales of livestock will be suspended and there will be no entry to the shop. We will instead run a kiosk service for dry goods by the door.
I say final, because when we opened the shop, just over 6 years ago, it felt like we had unlimited space and we were scratching our heads, thinking how will we ever be able to fill the space. Back then we had 5 banks of fish tanks, the original 5ft plant tank that later became the common goldfish/axolotl tank, and 2 x 50cm cube tanks that were used for Goldfish at first, now used for live rock. A few months later came the 7ft coral tank, and roughly a year and a bit after we opened we had the first large refit. That gave us 2 more banks, the 6ft plant tank, the 5ft cichlid tank at the entrance and the Crystal Palace that has been housing our fancy goldfish until now. Within months the last of the space had been used up, so now we had to think differently. We were considering removing the false ceiling and installing a mezzanine to display dry goods and aquariums but in the end we lacked 3-4 inches under the ceiling to be able to make this a feasible solution. What we came up with in the end are still big changes and we are really excited about the new floor plan.
First of all, we are getting a brand new marine section. The 7ft coral tank is going and in it’s place we are getting 2 brand new fish racks for marine fish which will bring the total number of banks to 9. The plant tank will be moved the other way so that it faces the entrance side of the shop, and in its place will be the 2 live rock tanks and a different smaller coral table. The 7 footer just took too much space and the new table will be able to host as many, if not more corals than the old one. With that we should be left with more floorspace in the marine section, by moving the live rock tanks and take away the bottle neck they create.
The old marine racks, Rack 6 and 7 will be converted to freshwater and Rack 1 will be converted to coldwater. All goldfish will be gathered in one space, also with room for temperate fish, so no need anymore to look for the handwritten T’s on the labels. This will make Crystal Palace our new fish hotel. We are currently struggling to deal with certain larger fish that’s grown out of customers tanks. That’s now history, we should be able to take in pretty much anything after the refit.
Finally we are getting a canopy above the counter built within the next few weeks. The counter will have kind of a bar look, and at the top of it we will display empty aquariums that will free up some floor space so that we can stock more decorations, rocks and wood.
The aquatic systems will be stocked like this after the refit:
Rack 1 – Coldwater and Temperate Fish
Rack 2 – Community Fish
Rack 3 – Livebearers, Odd balls and Turtles
Rack 4 – Fish from Oceania
Rack 5 – African Cichlids
Rack 6 – American Cichlids
Rack 7 – Fish from the Amazon
Rack 8 – Marine Fish & Inverts
Rack 9 – Marine Fish
I shall try and update on our progress on a daily basis, whilst the work starts tomorrow evening.