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Discussion Starter #1
I installed a package of bees today and later noticed that the syrup can did not have a hole in it.
The bees seemed to be very lethargic but they were clustered at the top of the shipping cage so maybe everything is OK.
The bees were in the mail for 4 days.
 

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I think you benefited from the weather being cool while they were in transit. Get some syrup on them asap. I'd even give them a light spray of 1:1 just to get them started if it was me.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I Put a quart jar feeder over the inner cover with 1:1 syrup when I installed the package.
All I can do now is wait.
 

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Let us know how you make out. I assume you contacted the supplier? If not, you should asap. Any reputable company will replace them. J
 

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It's very surprising after 4 days with no food that there was not a thick carpet of dead bees on the bottom of the package.

It's influenced by temperature, how much they had in their stomachs to start with, etc, but as a general rule of thumb you would expect to see dead bees starting to pile up in a package by the 48 hour mark and by 4 days most of them would be dead or very close to it. By some circumstance you got lucky. Transit temperatures and handling must have been very close to ideal, and my guess would be that by some circumstance they started out with more food in their stomachs than typical package bees do.

Different for a swarm, they start out prepared for a possible long journey and carrying as much food as they can.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
There is no chance of replacing the package because there was a visible dent where someone tried to make a hole. I did not notice that the hole did not go all the way through before I opened the can with a can opener to remove the syrup, at that time I found that the can was completely full of syrup and the original hole did not go through.
I now cannot prove anything.

The package of bees smelled bad but there was only about 1 inch of dead bee. Today the hive had a lot of bee flying. I will have a better idea when I remove the queen cage.

The temperature here has been 50s during the day and 40s at night. The bees came from the south where it must have been warmer.
 

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Dead bees pack down tight, an inch could be quite a few bees.

However sounds like you might still may have enough bees to survive, do you have other hives?

Also, all it will cost you to talk to the supplier is the time it takes you to write an email. I would, worst can happen is you get ignored but that leaves you no worse off then you are now. I would just tell your story plus attach a photo of the lid with the dent, even though you opened the tin, shouldn't be an issue.

An honorable vender may send you another package with a couple pounds of bees, no queen, which you could dump into the hive to help them out.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
After 4 days I released the queen, the bee seemed happy to see her.
Today I removed the hive to clean the bottom board. I put the dead bees into a 5 gallon pail.
There was a good inch of dead bees in the pail. I weighed the bees and their weight was 1/2 lb.
I think the hive will be OK.
 
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