Needle-Felted Art, Custom Pet Portraits, and Soft Sculptures

~Meet the Alpacas!~

Car after car slows down, the driver leaning toward the window, their expression priceless.  You can't blame them; you don't see fleecy mountain creatures grazing on someone's front lawn everyday.  Sometimes a driver pulls over.  "Are those LLAMAS?" they call out in wonderment.  Not quite!  Alpacas are like the llama's little cousins.  They are shorter and friendlier than llamas, with calm temperments and insatiable curiosity.  (We can't do anything in the driveway without a wooly face peeking over the fence!)  Ever since we bought the alpacas about five years ago, they've been nothing but a joy.  Our three have very distinct personalities.  (VERY distinct!)

  

Cynnabar

Cynnabar is tall and serious, always keeping an eye out for potential danger.  He has soundly established himself as "leader of the herd."  He is protective of the girls, and gently comforts them when they are distressed.  He pretends to be tough, but he's really sweet.


Monique

Monique is the "darling" of the flock.  She tolerates hugs and she loves to give nose bonks.  This lovable creampuff is nearly everyone's favorite of the 3...especially when she sports a funny hat.


Tallulah

Tallulah is timid and sweet, but doesn't like to be petted.  She grew up on a very large farm where the alpacas didn't receive much individual attention.  It took her a while to adjust to living in a small herd, but she's warmed up quite a bit.  We have very little trouble harnessing her and she will touch an outstretched hand with her nose to say hello.  When she feels nervous the other two alpacas are always very patient in comforting her.


Alpacas are very unique creatures, but not just because of their personalities.  

A lot of people have questions about alpacas.  Here's a video of the alpacas before & after shearing as well as a few quick facts about these wonderful animals.



Alpacas: Before and After Shearing (Video)

Do alpacas spit?

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They do, but not very often.  They mostly spit at each other when they get annoyed.  They don't usually spit at people (except the veterinarian!!!)

Do they have hooves?

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Alpacas have padded feet like a dog's or cat's.  Each toe is covered with a tough nail.  This helped them to navigate the Andes Mountains, where alpacas originated.

What do alpacas eat?

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They eat 2nd cut hay, which is softer and richer than first cut, which larger animals like horses and cows eat.  We supplement their diet with special grain made just for alpacas.  

Do they like to be petted?

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Not really.  They are very gentle animals and tolerate petting, but they don't appreciate it the way a dog does. They like their necks petted the best.  Although it's tempting to pat those fluffy hairdos of theirs, alpacas dislike to be pet on the head.

Do you shear alpacas?

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Yes we do!  Alpacas are shorn once a year in the spring.  They resemble lanky poodles when shorn (haha).  Alpaca fiber has luxurious quality.  It's 7 times warmer than wool, and very soft to the touch.  It is also free of lanolin, a grease found in wool, so alpaca fiber is hypoallergenic as well!

Besides llamas, what are alpacas related to?

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Alpacas are members of the camelid family, which consists of camels, llamas, alpacas, vicuanas, and guanacos.  (The vicuna is pictured here.)  Vicunas and most guanacos are still untamed.

©2017 Katelyn Mumford