Bizarre shipping incidents
I recently had a weird incident happen to me after shipping out some shrimp and just wanted to share it.
I have been selling red cherry shrimp online pretty much non stop since the beginning of the year. I have never had any complaints with deaths or anything about my packaging so Iím led to believe Iíve been doing something right. The way I pack is I cut 1 inch thick 6Ēx6Ē Styrofoam squares to line my USPS box. I then fill the box half way with ceiling insulation, the recyclable-newspaper/magazine-kind not the pink stuff. ĎBreather bag up the shrimp with some moss. Wrap the bag in newspaper or paper towel and place it on top of the insulation. Top off with more insulation and the last Styrofoam square. Finally, I place the packing slip on top of the Styrofoam and then seal the box.
So about 2 weeks ago, I checked the tracking on my shipments to see if they had been delivered yet, as I normally do, and saw that one of my packages was being returned due to an insufficient address. The package was going from CA to NY, back to CA, and the customer forgot to supply me with their apartment number. This really got me worried because anything that doesnít fit in my mail box, USPS will deliver to the leasing office of my complex for pick up. Also due to my commute, I can only pick up my packages on the weekend because the leasing office is closed when Iím home during the week. So I was concerned that the shrimp could be trapped in the bag for 2 weeks or longer depending on the efficiency of the post office. I checked the tracking one last time on that Friday, and it shows that the package was just received in a sorting center in New Jersey. Great, so I figure itís going to be a while before the package gets back to me.
On Saturday, I do my normal shipping rounds and when I check my mail I get the pink slip that says there is a package for me waiting in the front office. Sure enough, itís the shrimps. At this point theyíve been in the box for 8 days. The box looks slightly traveled, but not too beat up. Corners all still come to a point, no dents, just mostly dirty. Time to see what the status is on these Schrodinger's shrimp.
I open the box and the first thing I find is the packing slip that I placed on top of the Styrofoam is wet. I start to dig threw the insulation and find it to be saturated, same for the newspaper that I wrapped the bag in. After peeling back the wet newspaper which is literally falling apart just by looking at it, I find the bag. One of the side seams had burst open. Some movement catches my eye in the bag, which has been completely drained of water. There are shrimp still stuck to the inside of the bag.
I take my bucket I use to hold the shrimp in while bagging them and fill it with some of their original tank water and place whatís left of the bag in it. ALL of the original 15 shrimp that I had sent out were swimming around in the bucket like it was nothing. I am so shocked that there were no deaths. How long ago did the bag burst and what caused it? How did not one shrimp get sucked out of the bag? The tracking showed that they were delivered 3 hours before I picked them up from the office. So were they clinging to the walls of the bag with for that long? Longer? Since the packing slip that is placed on the outside of the Styrofoam box was wet leads me to believe that the bag burst happened sometime when the box was not upright, which it was upright when I picked it up from the office. I suppose some apartment people could have moved it when they were looking for their packages, but again the box was in pretty good shape.
I just find this experience all too bizarre and wanted to share it. Has anyone else had any outrageous mishaps when it comes to shipping or receiving live animals in the mail?