If you've never attended a fish auction before, we've prepared this helpful guide. Enjoy yourself at the auction!
Different than a Swap Meet
An auction is different that a swap meet. Each bag of fish is sold individually, in order, by our auctioneer.
You need to Register
You will need to register to buy fish. On our calendar, the link to the Auction page contains instructions so you can register as a buyer, seller or both.
You may also register the day of the auction in person.
When you arrive at the auction, check-in as a buyer. You will need to leave a major credit card or drivers license as collateral.
Viewing Fish for Sale
Bags of fish are placed on tables in the rear of the room. Take this opportunity to see what is available for sale.
Viewing is allowed during check-in. However, viewing will be closed for approximately 15 minutes prior to the auction to allow the bags to be moved to the auctioneer. Viewing will then be open during the entire auction.
The Auctioneer and Bidding
Have a seat and listen to the auctioneer. The auction starts at 10AM and goes until the last bag of fish is sold.
A screen at the front of the room will list the item for sale. In some cases, a picture may also be available.
Our auctioneer or auction expediter will describe the bag of fish by the latin and and common name (if applicable).
Example 1: Here's an adult trio of the Lemon Yellow Cichlid, Labidochromis caereuleus, each about 3" long.
Example 2: This is a bag of six, 1-1/2 inch juvenile Parachromis dovii, the Wolf Cichlid.
Note that sometimes the number of fish in the bag might vary
Next, the auctioneer will ask for a starting bid. "Who will start me off at ten bucks for this bag of fish?"
To bid, raise your buyer number in the air. The auctioneer will recognize your bid. Keep bidding up until you've made your purchase. Bids must be proceed at minimum increments of $1.
If you win, keep your buyer card up and the auctioneer will recognize you. Your buyer number will be recorded. A runner will bring your fish to you and ask you to sign a buyer slip.
Did you find a bag of fish in the viewing area you really want to buy, but don't know when it will come up for sale? You can purchase ($3) a Priority Sticker for the bag you want. Our auction staff will bring up the priority bag for auction immediately. You will still need to bid against others to secure your purchase.
You can bid more if you really want the bag of fish. For example, if the current bid is $5, you could raise your bid card in the air and yell $10. This strategy may deter others from bidding against you.
You do not need to accept the auctioneers starting price. For example, let's say a group of adult discus comes up for sale. The auctioneer might ask for a starting bid of $50. You could raise your buyer card and shout "Twenty Dollars". The auctioneer will likely accept your bid and bidding will progress from that amount.
Checking out the Fish
If you're not sure about the fish that is up for bid, you can walk up to the front of the room to take a look. Move fast, though. We usually move through 100 bags of fish per hour.
Accepting the Fish and Signing the Buyer Slip
If you are the high bidder, an auction runner will bring the fish to you.
For each purchase you make, you will receive a Buyer Slip. This slip documents:
- Your buyer number
- Amount paid
- Seller Number
- Seller Bag Number
Carefully inspect the fish before signing the Buyer Slip.
Hold onto your buyer slips which are a record of your purchases.
How do I check out and pay for my purchases?
You may check-out any time during the auction. If you decide not to purchase any items, you will still need to return your buyer card and number to the cashier to receive your collateral.
If you have purchase fish, bring your buyer slips with you.The cashier will ask and collect your buyer number, and confirm the amount owed with you.
After payment, your collateral (Drivers License) will be returned.
Accepted Forms of Payment for Purchases
GCCA accepts cash (preferred) and major credit cards/Paypal.
Please remember all of the staff at the auction are volunteers. We want to make your auction experience a good one.
Please treat everyone you meet with respect. Any conflicts will be handled by the Auction Chairman.