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We've been getting a lot of emails about shipping costs being too high and we wanted to address the community about it here.
So why does it cost almost $50 to ship a spider? Why does Micro Wilderness only offer FedEx Overnight or 2 Day Shipping?
1. Federal Law
Federal Law prohibits the shipment of live animals, especially dangerous live animals, via US Postal Service. DHL, and UPS also will not carry live animals. The only legal method of shipping dangerous animals is FedEx Overnight, or FedEx 2 Day delivery. They have a special program, that caters specifically to venomous critters. Of course, having only one provider means that costs can soar.
Many of the transactions that used to take place via Facebook or other direct sales methods often used the cheapest shipping services available and often used shipping services that were expressly prohibited both by carrier policy and the law. That activity was and still is, illegal. Given that animals are often mailed over state lines, it's a federal offense. We cannot break the law OR include our customers in a crime by using these methods.
2. Mortality of the Animal
Tarantulas are hardy animals. However, they aren't invincible. They require special packaging and care to safely mail them to the many customers we serve. The process of mailing the animal introduces quite a bit of physical stress. Stress that builds as the animal's confinement lengthens. Combined with the fact that the box is often moving through different climates, in many cases, climates fatal to the Tarantula, it's important for the safety and health of the animal to get to its destination as quickly as possible.
Live Animal Guarantee - Making sure your new pet makes it home safely.
As a result of these two factors, we only offer a live animal guarantee on Overnight Shipping which usually delivers the Tarantula to you by 10:30 AM the next day to your door or a FedEx hub, of your choosing. This ensures the animal isn't confined for more than 24 hours. In some cases, the delivery happens in even less time.
For those that want to roll the dice for a little less, we also offer a 2 Day Service WITHOUT a Live Animal Guarantee. However, we have found, through historic data, that the mortality rate doubles the second day the Tarantula is in the shipping box. Some particularly sensitive species have a rate that is even higher for an additional day in shipment.
We understand that there is some sticker shock. We charge $50 or less for shipping. Often times the shipper we use, who provides us with amazing discounts, costs us more than $50. Unless you are within a couple hundred miles of us in Los Angeles, we are very likely eating some shipping costs on your order.
We do this because we love the animals, and we love sharing them with the world.
In addition to requiring shipping to be quick, we only ship on Monday through Wednesday.
Overnight shipping does not deliver on Saturday which means we cannot ship overnight on Fridays. We have had some issues with doing Overnight shipping on Thursdays because if the customer doesn't receive the package on Friday, the critters spend the weekend in the box which turns into four days of non-climate controlled confinement. So we limit shipping to the first three days of the week to protect the animals and ensure your new family member shows up as healthy as possible.
Additionally, in the late fall, Winter and early Spring months, we will not offer any shipping options except free pickup and One Day Overnight. The weather, for many of our customers, is simply not warm enough for an acceptable survival rate.
We hope that this explains where our shipping costs come from. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us. And remember, if you are in Los Angeles, Free Pickup is always an option.
Thank you for shopping with us!