Store Policy & Order Information

Everything you need to know about ordering from our company

NEHERP Shipping Box NEHERP Loading Dock NEHERP 2014 Office NEHERP Box Stack NEHERP Greenhouse Outgoing NEHERP Reception
Our team has been shipping sensitive perishables, terrarium supplies and more since 2009, and we've developed industry-leading guarantees & original packaging methods to ensure our clients & their pets are very well taken care of. :-) As far as shipping & logistics are concerned, we are absolutely determined to do the best we can in terms of speed, reliability, and cost.
We offer fair, fast, reliable Fed-Ex & USPS shipping, and most supply-only orders ship within 1-2 business days. All orders receive accurate tracking messages via email as soon as the order has processed & shipped. With our Guaranteed Ground policy in effect during fair weather months, and an excellent perishable guarantee otherwise, you can rest assured you'll be taken care of from the moment you hit "submit order", until the package is safely delivered at your door.
The most important thing to understand is this: We're a small family owned business, and we truly appreciate your support. You can count on us to help whenever we can, and to do the right thing when it comes to customer service. Our business was built almost entirely by word-of-mouth recommendations between hobbyists & professionals alike, and we promise to do our best to live up to your expectations. This store policy page was created to provide as much detail as we possibly can regarding what to expect when you order from us. If you have any questions about our policies below, don't hesitate to contact us!

Order Submission, Receipt, and Tracking Info

What to expect when you order from us

After an order is placed, a payment receipt & order contents list is sent from PayPal to the email address used during checkout. (Click to view a sample of this email!) Our checkout system is powered by PayPal for all automated forms of payment (debit cards, credit cards, e-checks, etc), so PayPal's confirmation email is the only confirmation email sent when an order is submitted. When the order ships, another email containing tracking information will be sent from either FedEx or USPS. If an incorrect email address was used while placing an order, or you have not received tracking with the below order processing schedule in mind, please contact us for tracking info.

Order Processing Schedule

When to expect your order to ship

We pack & ship orders as quickly as we can, paying extra attention to ensure perishable orders arrive safely. Most supply & feeder orders ship within 1-2 business days of an order being placed, and orders containing plants usually ship within 3 business days. We do not ship orders containing perishables over weekends, to protect the contents from the typical weekend delay. For that reason, perishables going to more distant states may not ship until the following Monday/Tuesday, to ensure the contents avoid the weekend delay & arrive safely. Shipping type (Standard or Express) does not affect order processing times. As always, if you are in a serious rush to receive any order, please email us after the order is submitted to keep us in the loop! We don't mind helping out whenever possible.

Typical Transit Times

Expected number of days in transit, after an order is processed & shipped


Standard Shipping Service


The above map illustrates how long a shipment typically takes to arrive using our standard shipping service. Please note this graph only considers how many business days an order usually takes to arrive once it's picked up by FedEx or USPS. Transit times may vary slightly.

Express Shipping Service


This service is not recommended or beneficial for those who live in a 1-day transit zone, shown in yellow on the standard shipping map. Most express shipments are a 1-day delivery, but some more distant customers may experience up to 2 days. Express service is available on the last page of checkout.
Important: Transit graphs represent shipping times after order is processed and has been picked up by FedEx/USPS.

Perishable Shipping Guarantee

Answer the below questions for your specific guarantee info!

Do you live within 1 transit day of NEHERP?

(Highlighted in yellow below)




Are You Local?

What's the lowest temperature between us (in CT) & you?

Please check the National Temperature Forecast to be sure!
Under 20F  |   Between 20-45F  |   Between 45-85F  |   Between 85-95F  |   Above 95F
Select Your Temperature
(Or, show all of the data for all temperatures!)

What's the temperature in your area?

Under 20F  |   Between 20-45F  |   Between 45-85F  |   Between 85-95F  |   Above 95F
Select Your Temperature
(Or, show all of the data for all temperatures!)

When Temps Are Between 45-85F:

Perishable Shipping Guarantee: Fair Temperatures
NEHERP's Guaranteed Ground Shipping Applies! In these fair weather conditions, all perishable packages using all shipping methods are guaranteed to arrive safely to all locations! If a perishable order shipped under our guarantee arrives damaged, the affected items will be replaced or refunded at NEHERP's expense. Wherever you are located, you can ship ground confidently when temps are 45-85F! :-)
To ensure perishables have the highest possible chances of healthy arrival, we include free non-toxic ice packs & heat packs when deemed necessary.
Back To Temperature Selection
...or, start over

When Temps Are Above 85F or Below 45F:

Perishable Shipping Guarantee: High & Low Temperatures
We can't offer a guarantee for orders shipped ground in these temps, unless the client is located near NEHERP. We'll ship ground to save you money on shipping if you don't mind the risk, but can only offer our guarantee (in temps over 85F or or under 45F) when express shipping is chosen. In some cases, it may be cost effective to ship any heavy items using ground shipping, with the remaining lighter perishables shipping express service.
To help maximize the likelihood that perishables will arrive safely in these conditions, we include either non-toxic ice packs or heat packs for free. (Applies to both Ground & Express)
Back To Temperature Selection
...or, start over

For Clients Located Near NEHERP:

Perishable Shipping Guarantee: Local Clients
Nearby clients within 1 ship day can ship using ground service guaranteed in most temperatures. All clients in CT, MA, RI, VT, NH, NJ, and NYC are included. Most clients in PA, ME, NY, and DE are covered too. Unless temperatures are what we'd consider extreme, local clients can ship ground guaranteed, year-round!
To ensure perishables have the highest possible chances of healthy arrival, we include free non-toxic ice packs & heat packs when deemed necessary.
Back To Temperature Selection
...or, start over

During Extreme Temperatures:

Perishable Shipping Guarantee: Extreme Temperatures
Our staff may consider conditions in the "extreme" category if temperatures are approaching 100F+, diving down below 20F, or when a storm is likely to delay a package in transit. In these cases, we may make contact to schedule a safer shipping window.
Back To Temperature Selection
...or, start over
Perishable Guarantee Details:
Even if you suspect perishables in your order may have been damaged in transit while covered by our guarantee, please let us know ASAP. We want to help! All damaged product claims require photographic proof (email or text), and must be submitted to NEHERP by phone or email within 12 hours of package delivery. All deliveries of perishables must be accepted upon the 1'st delivery attempt to qualify for our guarantee. Please don't call or file a claim with USPS or FedEx, as doing so will block our ability to assist you directly! Instead, call or email NEHERP to let us know, so we can save you the trouble, and call our company representatives at FedEx & USPS on your behalf. :-)
Perishable Product Shipping Info:
We include free ice packs & heat packs in outgoing shipments whenever appropriate. All plants are individually labeled & shipped bare root to make shipping safer, less expensive, and to comply with USDA guidelines in certain states. Perishables can ship alongside heavy supply items using ground service, and all of our shipping guarantees still apply. We custom-compartmentalize shipping cases using strapping machines to help ensure each order will arrive in perfect shape. If a product is damaged due to a packing error on our end, the affected items will be replaced or refunded at our expense.
Extreme Weather, Storms, and Service Interruptions:
During cases of extreme weather or situations where FedEx has issued a transit delay warning, we may temporarily hold shipments & make contact to select a safer shipping window.

Order Payments & Order Processing

How payment type affects your shipment

Standard Payments
American Express Discover Mastercard PayPal PayPal Credit Visa
Standard payment methods include Debit Cards, Credit Cards, PayPal Payments, and PayPal Credit. These methods make up the majority of orders we receive, and all process on the above schedule. Our website features a secure & fully automated checkout for all of these methods of payment.
NEHERP Gift Certificates
Gift Card
Clients with store credit or an NEHERP Gift Certificate can submit an order via email, or by using the manual order submission form. If any payment is owed, we'll call to accept credit/debit card information over the phone. With payment completed, Gift Certificate orders ship on the above schedule.
E-Checks / Bank Transfers
Clients who pay with an e-check or bank transfer are subject to a 5-8 day payment processing delay, while the bank wires the money to NEHERP's account. Our website's order management system does not allow us to print packing slips or ship these orders prior to the payment clearing.

Note: All orders require payment in full before shipping. Sorry, but we do not offer credit terms at this time. View our privacy policy & terms for more info.

Shipping Costs

Keeping prices as low as possible

We do not over-bill (profit) on shipping/handling fees. Every year we under-bill shipping by thousands of dollars in an attempt to remain as competitive as possible. Shipping companies raise prices every year, and we continue to do our best to keep our shipping fees as low as we can possibly afford to. In January 2017, FedEx's rates raised once again by 3.9-4.9% across the board while increasing the surcharges and fees by a significant amount, too. USPS is also raising their fees for individuals & small businesses, as of January. Despite shippers raising prices on all the "little guys", and a bunch of predatory Internet marketplaces trying to squeeze us small businesses out, we're dedicated to keeping our shipping costs as low as we possibly can for our 8'th year in a row.
Please Note: In the unlikely event that an order is significantly under-billed for shipping during checkout, we reserve the right to contact the client & discuss options before shipping.

Commercial LTL Shipments

We're happy to pallet-ship larger orders going to businesses, museums, nature centers, and educational facilities

Once orders near 250lbs, we're happy to wrap it's contents & ship via freight on a pallet direct to a client's location. Please contact us with an order list, delivery preference information (dock or hydraulic lift), and address for a quote. There is no handling or pallet fee for this service, just the true cost of freight. For reference, about 250 gallons of our substrate fits per pallet stacked 5ft high.

Supplies Damaged In Transit

What happens if the carrier gets "creative" with your box? We've got you covered!

We carefully pack every order to help ensure a safe arrival. If the shipper damages the products during transit, we'll gladly handle the claims process for you! We insure every package we send, so our clients are always covered in cases like this. If something arrives to you damaged, please email us with photos of the damaged product, and we'll help arrange for either a refund or a replacement ASAP. If texting photos is easier for you, that works too @ (203)768-3414, but please don't forget to include your name & email address! By handling the claim ourselves, we prevent you from waiting 2-3 weeks for the shipper to issue a refund, which usually allows us to help with a reship or refund usually within 2 business days of reporting the issue. Fed-Ex & USPS ask for photo proof, and depending on the individual scenario, we may need to ship the damaged product back to us. (At our expense) Do not file a claim yourself, as doing so blocks our ability to be reimbursed by the shipper for their damage, and therefore prevents us from reshipping or refunding product. We'll do everything we can to turn this type of bad situation around for you quickly & easily, with no RMA numbers, "returns department", and no complicated procedures. Just email us, and one of our staff members will take care of you 1-on-1.

Returning Product

Ordered the wrong thing? We've been there. Here's how we can help.

We accept returns & exchanges on unopened supplies in resalable condition for up to 14 days after product was received. For sanitary reasons, and the protection of our clients, we can't accept returns on loose decor items or perishables. Clients are responsible for true shipping costs, which may be more than original shipping costs, when returning undamaged & correctly shipped product. Please visit our returns page for more details, and to start the returns process.

Shipper Error / Lost Shipment

What happens in the extremely unlikely event that the shipper loses the box?

If you suspect the shipper may have lost your box, please contact us as soon as possible. We'll be glad to help you through the claims process, as the shipper. Handling the claim allows us to send replacement items ASAP, and it makes things a little easier for our customers. With the claim successfully filed, we usually get replacements out on the next scheduled shipping day. We know working with plants & animals can be time sensitive, so we'll do our best to make the re-ship process as quick & easy as possible.

Incorrect Shipping Address Issues

Please make sure your shipping address is correct during checkout

It is the customer's responsibility to include a current and deliverable shipping address during checkout. New England Herpetoculture cannot be held liable for any costs associated with a client submitting incorrect or incomplete shipping address information. To be clear, our responsibility is to ship to the address provided by the client, and if that address was incorrectly submitted during checkout, we cannot be held liable for replacement or reshipment costs. If you notice your order has an incorrect shipping address included after checkout, or is already headed to an incorrect address with Fed-Ex/USPS tracking, please email us immediately. We can usually redirect a package that's already been shipped if it's caught in time, however shippers charge a $10-15 redirect fee to do so. This fee is the customer's responsibility in the event that an incorrect address was provided during checkout. If for any reason a package must be redirected or reshipped due to an error on our end, we'll gladly cover all associated fees.

FedEx/USPS Service Disturbances

Carrier delays directly affect our shipping schedules

Occasionally carriers send a delay notice when an issue is creating a delay in the delivery chain. Delays are usually attributed to natural occurrences (bad weather), and we try to keep these notices in mind when shipping perishables to clients, in an effort to ensure everything arrives safely. If we've been made aware of a delay issue in an area affecting an order, we'll email the client ASAP with our recommendations. Major carrier delays are a fairly uncommon occurrence, but these can lead to delays in our order processing time table.

Holidays & Scheduled Closings

We rarely close, except for national holidays!

Our business closes on most nationally observed holidays, and these closures will affect our shipping schedule for that week. Generally speaking, if FedEx and/or USPS are closed, we'll be closed too. Please plan accordingly.

Reptile & Amphibian Shipping Guarantee

★ Record: 100% Live Arrival For 5+ Years! ★

We guarantee the healthy arrival of every animal we sell when the following guidelines are followed:
1) All live shipments require signature on arrival, and are shipped using FedEx Priority Overnight Express service.   
2) Live shipments must be signed for by the recipient upon the first delivery attempt to qualify for our guarantee.
3) All claims must be made within 2 hours of receiving the shipment, and pictures will be requested & necessary.
4) We strongly recommend shipping to a FedEx location if possible, to maximize the chances of healthy arrival.  
All live shipment expenses are quoted per order, typically ranging from $38-55, depending a client's distance from Connecticut. Shipping expenses include the cost of Phase 22 Pack(s), Insulated Case(s), Cup(s), LACEY Act compliant labeling, and soft fill. In the unlikely event that an an animal arrives DOA with the above guidelines followed, a replacement animal will be sent at no additional expense to the client. If replacement(s) aren't available, the customer will be refunded fully. (Including the cost of shipping) We use well insulated boxes, phase 22 packs, and 40 hour heat packs whenever necessary to maximize the likelihood of a successful live shipment.

International Shipping

Not available at this time

Canadian customers please click here. Due to the nature of the vast majority of our products, and the increasing difficulty of shipping much of it over the border, we do not offer international shipping at this time. The following items are prohibited from shipping over the border: aerosol cans, fly cultures, fruit fly media, horticultural substrates, indian almond leaves, isopod cultures, leaf litter, moss, non-branded herp substrates, perishables, phoenix worm cultures, plants, springtail cultures, tree fern based products, vivarium substrates, and wood decor. If you'd like to proceed with a supply-only international order, some clients have had luck using a reship address in the USA to keep things simple. Note: We cannot be held liable for any difficulties incurred by attempting to reship outside the USA.

Price Match Policy

Part of our Great Deal Guarantee

We'll do our best to meet any vivarium or herp supply business's price on any brand name item we sell. If you've found a lower price on a name brand item from a competing herp-shop, please email us with a link to the competing product page for a price-match. Please Note: Third party & corporate supply marketplaces are ineligible for price-matching, as they are not competing herp-shops, and are very often predatory against small businesses like us. Sorry: No price matching on perishables, non-branded items, non-alike items, or wood decor.

Customer Support Policy

The best customer support service in the vivarium hobby

If you have a question regarding an order, just shoot us an email, and our small team will be glad to help. We do not use an automated calling service, auto-response emails, or any non-human related methods of communication. Emails related to orders are typically responded to the same or next business day, and non-order related inquiries can take a little longer for us to get to. Every member of our team is either a herpetoculture enthusiast or professional, so you can rest assured you'll be getting top-notch advice for the topic at hand. We're proud of our stellar customer service record, profesional husbandry advice, and we guarantee that our level of one-on-one customer service will meet or exceed your expectations.
Vivarium Customer Support
Basic Vivarium Support:
Customers who have purchased their vivarium supplies from us (or will soon do so) can count on the NEHERP team to help them through all the basics of live vivarium construction. Beyond that, we're glad to offer recommendations down the road as the vivarium environment acclimates & matures. Basic live vivarium consultation service is absolutely free for customers, and we're always glad to help with topics like microfauna acclimation, plant care, lighting, maintenance, and more. We're your one stop vivarium shop, and we're here to help.
Husbandry Support
Husbandry Support:
Our team has worked with hundreds of animals over the years, and our team is comprised of current & previous professional breeders. We're glad to offer advice whenever we can pertaining to the care of the vast majority of common vivarium dwelling species, as well as plenty of the more common pets in the hobby. Whether it's a concern about the proper supplementation of a thumbnail Dart Frog from the tropics, or a question over the breeding habits of a Leopard Gecko from the arid areas of Pakistan, we're always glad to help.
Advanced Vivarium Consulting
Consultation Services:
For situations more complex than basic vivarium support for our clients (which is free), we're happy to act as design consultants. We're able to lend a hand with topics like lighting, plant selection, custom background design, species-specific design, ecological sustainability, and much more. 3D design service is also available for custom parts, custom installations, and more. For clients who aren't local, we're glad to work with a contractor to get the job done. Scheduled consultations are handled directly by the management team directly.
Non-Customer Support Policy
We're sorry to say that we've experienced an increase of non-customers asking questions & requesting advice on how to build, fix, maintain, or modify vivariums which were built with products which weren't purchased from us! While we're glad to go above & beyond to support those who have supported (or will soon support) us, we are unable to offer customer service to those who aren't actually customers, since doing so ultimately hurts our small family business. In other words, if you'd like reliable & experienced support, please support our reliable & experienced business. :-)