Frequently Asked Questions:
What are Alpacas used for?
Alpacas are the source of luxurious fiber. After mohair, alpaca
is the strongest natural fibre. Garments are warmer, lighter, softer,
silker & more lustrous than wool. Many people who find wool prickly,
can comfortably wear aplaca. Alpacas are shorn once a year yeilding
5-10 pounds of exquisite fleece. The fibre, virtually grease-free, can
be hand spun directly off the animal. Alpacas are one of the easiest,
gentle, intelligent, clean, earth friendly, and profitable animals to
Are they intelligent?
Yes, Alpacas are intelligent and easy to train. In as little
as 4-5 repetitions they will pick up and retain many skills, such as
accepting a halter, being led and loading in and out of a vehicle. They
communicate with each other through body posture, tail and ear movements,
and a variety of sounds. The sound heard most often is a soft humming.
Who do you sell their fiber to?
Canadian demand is primarily through the cottage industry of
handspinners, yarn shops, and weavers who produce woven or knitted products.
Consumer demand is expected to remain strong due to a trend towards
high quality natural fibers..
How much acreage do you need to raise Alpacas?
They are an ideal small acreage livestock. Typically you can
raise 5-8 alpacas on 1 acre depending on the quality of your pasture.
Alpacas are gentle on the land as they have soft padded feet and two
toes. They use a communal dung pile making pasture and manure management
What and how much do they eat?
Alpacas are ruminants with three compartment stomachs. They chew
their cud like cattle and sheep. Alpacas prefer to eat fresh grass.
In the summertime they prefer to be in the pasture and you only need
to feed them a pellet supplement. During the winter they will require
a good grass hay and slightly more pellets to insure they have adequate
vitimains and minerals.
Do Alpacas Spit?
They will spit at one another over food or if sufficiently angered,
but would rarely spit on a human. Occasionally a human will get in the
way of an Alpaca spitting at another Alpaca.
Are Alpacas easy to care for?
They are small and easy to maintian. They rarely
overeat and require no extraordinary care. They should have basic shelter
for protection against heat and foul weather. They require regular worming
and vaccinations, in addition to occasional trimming of their nails
and teeth. The alpacas should be shorn annually.