Pet store employees should know what kind of fish they stock, right?
I shouldn't have went back to this store. Two years ago, I went in to have a look at their bettas. One of the EMPLOYEES had put a male betta into a tank with 50 females. Those who don't know anything about bettas should know that male and female bettas never be housed together because they will rip each other to shreds. They will even rip each other to shreds during the breeding process. This poor guy was floating on top of the water and his fins were mangled. I told an employee that he shouldn't be in that tank, and, referring to another employee, he said "I told her that she shouldn't have put him in there!" Well, I ended up taking the poor guy home. The next day, the fish had fungus, but after that cleared up, he was bouncy and happy.
I didn't go back to the store until now.
My favorite fish store closed down about a year ago, which left Walmart and this pet store. I decided to re-do and re-stock my ten gallon tank. I decided to get my fish from this store because they had better looking tanks and a better selection.
I had to hunt down this young girl to help me with the fish. Because they had so many tanks, I was having a hard time finding the fish I was looking for. I asked her if she had any black neon tetras. She looked. Nope. I asked her if she had any otocinclus. She looked. No. I asked her if she had any corydoras. Yes! She said she had some pearl cories, which I've never heard of, but I figured I would have a look. She leads me over to this tank that was labled "Assorted Corydoras" filled with what looked like pictus catfish. I saw some little guys scurrying along the bottom. "Are those peppered cories? If they are, I'll take three of them." and stepped back to let her bag the fish. She started bagging the pictus catfish. "You see those dark coloured guys on the bottom? I want those." I stepped out of the way while she bagged them. Before I could get a look at them, she carried them off to the front of the store. She bagged me a platy, and all was good. They had the fish in a store bag for me when I paid so I grabbed the bag and left.
Well, when I got home, I realized that what they had given me weren't cories. I should have looked in the car or something, but I didn't want to stress the guys out. No big deal. I introduced them to my tank and came on the interwebs to try to identify them. If they could live in a 10 gallon tank, I was going to keep them, because they were pretty cool. Well... there was no way that I could keep them. The store had given me upsidedown catfish. These fish need 75 gallons!
The next day I called the manager. I explained that I had wanted corydoras and was given upsidedown catfish. She said that I could return them. I asked her if they had any cories in stock. She said that they had pearl corydoras, and that I could do an exchange if I want. I said that I wasn't sure and that I would have to get a good look at them first. I told her what time I would be in and thanked her.
I googled "Pearl Corydora" and NOTHING came up. According to google, they don't exist!
I went back to the petstore and there was old employee and young employee standing around the fish section doing nothing. They saw me come in with a bag of fish, and just stared at me as I walked towards them.
Me:"I talked to the manager earlier and she said I could return these fish."
Old employee: "Oh. You're the girl with the fish."
They make no attempt to take the bag from me, so I take the bag out of the plastic bag and had it to the old employee.
Old employee: "So you want to return these?"
She finally takes the bag and sets it in the sink.
Young employee: "You know that you could keep them until they get too big for your tank and then give them to us."
Me: "I don't want to do that. My parents are going to be taking care of the tank, not me, and I want the tank to be full of fish that they won't have to worry about returning in a year's time."
Young employee: "Oh. We can do an exchange then."
Me: "I would like to see the fish first before I do an exchange. I know what I'm looking for and I don't want to take home a fish that I know nothing about."
Young employee: "Well we have pearl corydoras."
Me: "I did some research on the internet and could find nothing about pearl corydoras. Which ones are they?"
She points to the pictus catfish.
Me: "Those are not cories. Those are some kind of pictus catfish. Cories look somewhat like the upsidedown catfish but have taller, thicker bodies, and they do okay in 10 gallon tanks, unlike the upsidedown catfish."
Young employee: "Well, these ARE a type of cory. They are a species of cory. They came to us labled this way."
Me: "Well, do you ever get in panda cories, albino cories, bronze cories, anything like that?"
Young employee: "Uh... when they come to us, they are labled 'Assorted Cory'. So do you want any?"
Me: "I can't get fish today because I have some errands to run. Is there anyway I can get my money back and come back when you guys get more stock in?"
The old employee and young employee whisper to each other and then slowly make their way to the front of the store. The old employee, annoyed, says that she's going to talk to the manager. They meet me at the register and say that they can give me a giftcard. Whatever. I just wanted to leave. They didn't know how to refund the money onto the gift card and it took them about ten minutes to do so.
Not only were they stupid, but they had NO emotion on their face what so ever during the entire conversation. They talked to me like they were bored, and treated me like I was the stupid one.
These are cories, more specifically, a bronze cory. All cories have this type of body but their coloring and the length they grow to be is different:
These are pictus catfish:
These are upsidedown catfish: