...and they do not require the same packing and shipping procedures! So please do not put them in the same category.
Copepods and phytoplankton are much hardier than fish and coral and they are much easier to ship too. That is why we can offer such low shipping rates and free shipping. In their natural environment, which is the ocean, they have evolved to be extremely tolerant of changing conditions because they often get stuck in tide pools where extreme swings in temperature, salinity, oxygen levels, and pH can occur. Over time, this has made them extremely well adapted to tolerate a wide range of water parameters.
We grow all of our products at 80 degrees fahrenheit. This means that they certainly do not require constant refrigeration to stay alive. Think about it... at what temperature do you keep your tank? And where do you plan to put the copepods and phytoplankton? Exactly. It wouldn't make any sense if copepods and phytoplankton immediately died when they reached "room temperature" or even 20 degrees above it. So please do not worry if your box arrives "at 80 degrees" because that is actually the ideal temperature for our products and it is the same temperature they were grown and packaged at. Storing them in the fridge just makes them "hibernate" so that their metabolism is slowed and they can stay alive in a sealed bag for up to three weeks. Chances are you are going to put them in your tank shortly after their arrival, and they were bagged the same day they left our facility, so room temperature, or even 20 degrees above it is not a big deal at all.
Copepods and Phytoplankton can withstand temperature ranges between 45-95 degrees. So, our goal when shipping them is to keep them below 95 in the summer and above 45 in the winter. Please do not expect your ice packs to be frozen or your heat packs to be warm when the copepods arrive because this is simply not necessary. Could we do it? Yes. Would it require expensive styrofoam cooler boxes? Yes. Would we have to charge you more for shipping in that case? Yes.
Let's put it this way... we ship hundreds of packages each week all over the United States (even to Alaska) all year long in every weather condition imaginable and we guarantee every order to be 100% Alive On Arrival or we will replace it free of charge and cover the shipping on the replacement. That means if we didn't have our packing and shipping methods down pat, we wouldn't still be in business. So let us worry about the shipping so you can relax and order with confidence knowing that we are going to get your order to you alive and on time, the first time, every time.