Thursday, January 4, 2007

Alpacas warming up at our new alpaca farm

It is now Thursday January 4th 2007. Our Alpacas have been at Furbelow Alpaca Farms
since last Saturday night. In just 4 short days they are warming up to me. I still don't know if I can catch Pearl she seems to be the most distant of the bunch. It is nice that Pearl is NOT spitting at any other alpacas.

I need to go feed the alpacas in about 45 minutes. They sure love grain!
Now when I go to the farm they see me coming and are waiting and watching always when I come up the hill. I feed them twice a day. I have increased thier grain a bit since a new home can be stressful. For the last day or so, when I get the grain out of the bin, they are there waiting making it hard for me to get through the gate. Then as soon as I get in the gate, they start pushing and shoving and stealing the grain out of my bucket BEFORE I can get it into thier individual feed bins. Usually I feed the older boys first, they at least wait until I get the grain into thier feed bins.

I have 2 older male alpacas in one pen. And 3 pregnant alpacas in another with 3 very young male alpacas. Soon I need to wean one of the young male alpacas and separate Pearl, who is NOT the mom of any of the baby alpacas that I have, and put her with 2 of the youngest male alpacas. An alpaca weaning the forced way, separateing baby from mom. Then I will have 3
alpaca pens, 3 gates, and 3 alpacas in one pen, 3 in another and the 2 older male alpacas in the other.

For now the only animals we have on the farm are alpaca. We will move some dogs in later
as an early warning in the event of predators. We have 2 anatolian shepards, one beagle, and one border collie. The last 2 being mixed breed, however very smart dogs.
We are also considering getting some chickens or the like to protect the alpacas from parasites which can be carried in by snails and slugs. Chickens apparantly hunt for slugs and consider them a delicacy.

The problem with slugs is that as they crawl around everywhere, so slowly, they often crawl through all sorts of other wild animal feces, which can be full of parasites, who then latch on to the slug for a ride.

I often find slugs in my dogs feed bowls at my home in a totally residential area. So I am certain the slugs will come as alpaca can be messy eaters and drop all sorts of grain pieces on the ground.

Monday, January 1, 2007

We went to New Jersey and got our 8 Alpaca

We went to New Jersey and got our 8 Alpacas. The Alpaca didn't seem to mind the ride in the alpaca trailer we bought from Gore Trailers. The Alpacas just sat down and enjoyed the ride I guess.

They were a bit apprehensive about getting into the trailer. When we arrived at Furbelow alpaca farms, I don't think any of them wanted to get out of the trailer.

We led the alpacas 2 at a time to thier new pasture. Luckily we left thier halters on after we loaded them in New Jersey. It was tricky taking the alpcas off 2 at a time especially since we needed to keep the mom's with thier cria. So all 8 alpaca made it to thier new pens.
The 2 male alpacas went in one. And 3 pregnanat female alpacas and 3 young male cria went with them.

I got them some fresh orchard grass. Set up thier heated water buckets and grain feeding bins.
Needless to say as soon as the orchard grass was placed in the shelter before I got back with the water and grain, they had already found the hay and were eating like mad. It was only a 5 hour ride. I guess they were hungry.

They seem to be adjusting well. They have more running room than they had where they came from. In a few weeks I need to wean one of the cria, and in another month I have to wean another cria.

After these 8 alpacas get adjusted, I will bring my herdsire home and another pontentially promising male alpaca.