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How long can a package stay in the package?


Obviously they get shipped this way so they are designed to be able to spend a few days to a week in there I would guess. My bees are getting bumped up about a week earlier then they were before. This is good, and bad. Mine are being brought into the state by the seller/grower, not shipped via common carrier. So I will get them on April 17th which is a Sunday. Sunday is my Monday and my busiest day of the week, it will be a bit of a feat just to leave work for an hour to go get them. That being said, I will likely have to bring them back to work with me and keep them in the car or wrapped up at my desk so as to not alarm people.

I won’t get them home until around 9-9:30 pm that night. So they won’t get installed until the next morning before work. Should I do anything in particular with them when I get them home to keep them happy until morning?


They should last at least a week in the package Adam, but that’s not guaranteed. As long as they are stored in a cool dark place but not too cool they will last. A spray of luke warm water a couple of times a day keeps them hydrated.


If you spray, spray the package cage, not the bees, otherwise @Michael_Bush might shed tears for the bees! :imp:

As you are in Arizona, if your car is outside, please don’t leave the bees inside the car.


It is quite mild temperature wise right now. and they would be in the car from 6pm to 9pm so shouldn’t be that hot by then anyway. But I could bring them in to my desk as well, which I probably would do to be on the safe side.


Be warned Adam, they can generate a hum that will resonate right through your office. Could be quite amusing to watch peoples reactions.


Good call. I hadn’t really thought about them making all that much noise. But certainly something to think about.


I’ve kept them as long as a week but I don’t recommend it. The sooner they can fly and get started the better. Things that help:

  1. Make sure they don’t starve. I refilled the can on many occasions. Pull the can and if it’s half full don’t pull it all the way out. If it’s close to empty or empty, pull it all the way out and and put something on the hole while you refill. If it’s the kind with little holes poked in the can, I use a church key to make a hole, pour in the syrup and plug the hole with beeswax and put the can back in. If it’s the kind with a rubber grommet and cloth, I pop out the grommet and fill it and put it back in and the can back in.

  2. A cool, dark, quiet place, like the basement is best. Somewhere they aren’t in the light and they aren’t getting disturbed.

  3. No matter what the weather, I would install them. The worse the weather the better as they won’t drift so much. But if it’s cold, you may have to warm the syrup once a day so they can take it and not starve since they have no stores. I warm it to where I can just stand to put my finger in it and leave it in it. That is cool enough not to burn the bees but warm enough to stay warm for as long as possible.