Sunday, May 24, 2009

Recovery time...a week!

Okay, you know you are getting old when it takes you a week to recover from shearing day! Seriously though...doing 36 animals in two days doesn't sound to bad but we did it a little different this year and due to the excitement of the day I will have to do separate blogs!

This year we used a different shearer and we were very happy for the most part. Let me explain. In the past we have used a skilled sheep-shearer turned alpaca-shearer. The of the alpacas! This shearer used a table and took the time needed to make the animal look fabulous! This meant that the animal was walked to the side of the table and gently tipped on it's side and strapped to the table. There was literally little to no struggling and the animal was gently tipped back off the table. It was great. Once you have used a shearing table you will most likely never go back. It was a little more time consuming compared to the usual wrestling and flipping of the alpaca...and more gentle on the pregnant females. This process also allowed us to sort the fiber as it came off the animal, inspect the animal and take care of shots, teeth trimming (if needed) and nails! It was a great couple of days but tiring doing 36 animals over two days. It is like that family trip when you had to some times get in the car at 4 am in order to have a quick quiet trip rather than dragging it out over two days...but if and when we do it is still worth the loving gentle technique used with the table rather than the wrestling match that sometimes ensues with the ground/mats. Alpacas first!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Birthing Season 2009, Cria #1

We usually keep our births posted...and the dates of our pending summer birth schedule is posted on our website...but the posts are coming in slowly and for that we apologize. We work multiple jobs and the farm is a passion we enjoy before after and sometimes during work!
This cria was 18 lbs and is a real spitfire. He was born in the late evening but we were fortunte enough to catch the birth in person. A visiting friend of a relative told us Yulo meant "night" in he shall be...since we recently found out that the original name we had chosen..."Kulo" meant something not to nice about an individuals rear a few other languages...Thus the change ;-) We'll keep you posted and catch you up to date over the next few days. It is a busy time on the farm as we are preparing for shearing day in the farm this Sat. May 9th.

Rudy it is!

Well I was thrilled to be in the barn today...I came home from my school at lunch time to help "nurse" a mom and cria...only to find that the new cria we had Sat. had in fact just started nursing! It is exactly like when you make the appointment at the pediatrician and then realize your kids are better. I had the vet coming in the afternoon and voila..she's nursing and her borderline high temp was lower! We were thankful. While standing there watching one cria nurse, my husband...who is a man of few words...refers to cria # 2 as Rudy. In that moment I knew he was right. It looked like a Rudy...after the movie...little... but mighty! Rudy has made his debut at Angel Tree Alpacas!