Purchasing Plants Overseas? - Betta Fish and Betta Fish Care
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-22-2012, 03:44 PM Thread Starter
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Purchasing Plants Overseas?

Recently I was looking on ebay and pricing marimo moss balls, because they're relatively expensive in the store (~5.99 a ball by me). HOWEVER on ebay you can get them extremely cheap. I've seen a few listing where you can purchase 5 balls for a little over $6, however they are coming from malaysia and I was just wondering if anyone had purchased plants like that before and what their experience was with it.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-22-2012, 04:38 PM
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If you want to import plants you need to have permits from the USDA. You also need level 2 access which requires a trip to your local USDA office to verify your identity. You need up to 5 different permits. After accounting for the time to get the permits and the shipping cost it worth it just to buy local and pay the extra few dollars.

If you are still interested though http://www.aphis.usda.gov/plant_heal...products.shtml
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-22-2012, 04:41 PM Thread Starter
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Ohhh. I was wondering about that. Yeah definitely not worth it. No wonder why they were so cheap. Haha. Thanks for the info! So glad I asked before purchasing.
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-22-2012, 04:42 PM
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yep, they will ship it to you regardless, but you will run the risk of being busted and fined.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-22-2012, 04:48 PM Thread Starter
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Yeah I think I'll just pass altogether. Knowing my horrible luck I would get caught and what I'd pay in fines prob could have bought me the Marino balls 100x over.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-22-2012, 05:45 PM
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I purchased two small marimos from eBay in complete ignorance of the need for a permit. Worked out just fine for me, but who knows how often people get caught?
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-22-2012, 06:03 PM
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I ordered overseas before I knew. What got me caught wasn't my lack of permits. The company forgot to include the Photo Sanitary Certificate. Then of course they checked to see if I had the permits. The plants were destroyed at LAX which is 5 minutes from me. I wasn't fined. I don't think they fine you the first time. I did get a warning. I know some things get through just because they are not labeled correctly but that could result in stiff penalties if they catch you. All in all I think it's better to pay the $5.99 or $7.99 (going rate in C.A.) then risk fines and possible jail time. I do wonder if there are trans-shippers for plants like there are for fish but adding in the cost of a trans-shipper makes it much more expensive.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-22-2012, 06:07 PM Thread Starter
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Yeah I was wondering if there were trans-shippers for the plants but I didn't see it mentioned on any of the ads so I didn't think you needed one which sounded really strange to me, but I figured I'd ask here in case.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-22-2012, 06:10 PM
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I think there is more money in trans-shipping fish then plants. I could ask my trans-shipper when she contacts me about my newest Betta coming in but like I said it would really add to the cost.
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-22-2012, 06:40 PM Thread Starter
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Yea there probably is because pretty much any of the plants you can buy overseas you can get relatively the same quality in the stores and there's not a huge price difference to make it worth it to people. In my opinion the quality of fish overseas is far superior then the majority that you would find in the states so I can see why that's a bigger market and people are willing to spend the extra bucks on.
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