Yeah, I just got one myself the other day (Tues) and it was refrigerated & swimming, kept in my fridge overnight with cap off and still swimming. Said bottled 10/18 and still doing well 11/3. If you read the site instructions (for Reef Nutrition) they say to keep refrigerated for long term storage with cap off and add a couple drops of Phyto-Feast I think, so maybe the LFS
you got them from skipped that step.
My tanks: 120 Reef w/L2 Algae Scrubber, 60 Reef Pond w/floating Algae Scrubber, 40 Breeder Reef w/L2 UAS Tester Algae Scrubber
I maintain: 144 SW Reef w/L2 Algae Scrubber | 200 SW Reef w/L4 Algae Scrubber
Special knowledge: Algae Scrubbers, Acrylic Fabrication