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Alpaca Factoids

The aristocat of farm livestock


Alpacas have coexisted with mankind for thousands of years. They held a central place and were considered a cherished treasure within the Incan Civilization culture. Their fleece was used to cloth the imperials and the alpaca was involved in many of their religious ceremonies. Some other interesting facts include:

  • Native to South America; 99% of the worlds population reside in Peru, Bolivia and Chile
  • Alpacas are part of the Camelid family, making them cousins to Llama and camels
  • Alpaca lifespan is 15 -20 years
  • Alpacas can be fully insured in order to protect your investment
  • There are two types of alpacas Huacaya(waa-ci-ya) and the Suri(sur-ee)
  • Alpacas are shorn once a year for their magnificent fleece
  • An alpaca will produce from 5 to 7 pounds of fleece from one shearing
  • There are 22 natural colors of alpacas
  • Alpacas will use a communal dung pile, makeing clean up a tad easier
  • The average weight of an alpaca is 150 lbs and they stand about 36 inches high at the shoulder
  • Cria will weigh 15 to 19 pounds at birth and will be standing upright and nursing within 2 - 3 hrs.
  • Alpaca babies are called cria
  • Alpacas now reside in all 50 states of the USA
  • Alpaca have very soft padded feet. They are considered the "green" livestock animal.
  • Alpacas are very effecient with their food, thus only requiring 1% - 2% of their body weight in food every day.
  • Alpacas create great tax advantages for the small acerage owner.
  • Alpacas do not come into heat, allowing ranchers to control the birthing season on their ranch.
  • Alpaca gestation period is 335 - 350 days with twins be very uncommon.
Add these and many other facts together and you have the alpaca being the aristocat of farm livestock. Easy to care for, easy on the farm land and beneficial to the lifestyle. It is no wonder that the Incan's still relish their unusually strong and resiliant fiber. A fiber that is soft and luxurious to the touch, yet shines with luster and brightness. A fiber once withheld for Royalty, is now available to all.

Updated June 13, 2011