Monday, August 24, 2009

Lansing Harbor Fest Rocks!

It was yet another fabulous year of the Lansing Harbor was a gorgeous day with lots of sunshine...a little humid but everyone was having so much fun it didn't dampen the mood! Each year there are more and more exciting exhibits...this year it was the Verve booth that got us going! We had energy drinks and raised money for the Lansing swim team. It is a great product and worth considering if you need a little healthy jumpstart!
The alpacas fared well for the day but left a little early due to the heat. Liberty and Yu lo were very courteous and enjoyed all the festival goers. People got a chance to see some of the handmade alpaca products that can be found at the Angel Tree Farm Alpacas Farm store and see what incredible things can be done with alpaca fiber!

Back to Back Babies!

It was quite an end to the breeding season on Angel Tree this year. We were surprised again and again this year...and again on Sunday (Aug. 16th) find a beautiful black male cria...and again on Saturday... we found a long awaited little white female cria. It has truly been a year of surprises. It has made it so much easier on the stress level of WAITING...which alpaca people know can drag on for days with dozens of trips to the barn a day...watching and waiting for a pending birth. We have been blessed that the births have been uneventful and independent. Yeah!

That is the beauty of alpacas...natural birthers and natural mom's! When we started in the alpaca business we would aniticipate the pending births with angst and now it has become a momentary thrill and then we calmly go about the rituals of prepping the cria for life on the farm. Now we have two more added to the herd...and to watch grow. No names yet :-)

Sunday, August 16, 2009

The Three B's

It was an exciting and exhausting day on the farm today...we had the three B's. It started off with a Birth, then a Burial and ended with Breedings! The birth was an unexpected twelve days early and delivered a healthy male cria (yet to be named!). The death was of one of our beloved old girls...Feliz. It was not a complete surprise as she has been showing signs of age for some time now. She delivered an adorable male cria (Rudy) earlier in the season who is adjusting to not having mom around. Abby the guard llama has taken him under her wing and he is doing fine. It will be strange to go to the barn and not see Feliz there with a mouth full of hay. It was a sad day. You think your aged alpacas will live forever on the farm as a "pet" but one day they die...that day came earlier than we had thought but she is resting now.
The day ended up with a few alpacas going for a drive in the trailer to breedings...then back home to the farm !
It was a day that showed...literally...the circle of life on the farm.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

And then there was...JUSTICE!

We returned from our vacation in Indiana just in the nick of time...or so my farm-sitting-nephew Kyle and mother/father think!

We were down at the barn when we noticed front feet and a head...coming from Abby our female guard llama. Abby continued to walk around the pasture for about 20 minutes or so before getting the sensation to push. (The intermittent rain and downpour didn't phase her). The baby came out nicely on it's own... and so considerate and perfectly timed that we could all watch. My parents, Mal and Ellie even had time to finish their breakfast and still got there in time to see the eventual birth! We watched Abby, who is a natural mom, wander around the pasture and stall as she passed the after birth and allowed us to do our usual birthing procedures...drying, weighing (a whopping 27.5 lbs!), temp...(a perfect 100.3), dipping the umbilical cord and putting on the cria coat. Then we wait as the two rested, attempted walking and the eventual nursing. Abby is a gentle giant and loves her babies...and only gave us the occasional warning spit...of only air! She knows we love her and we were helping.

As we stood watching this incredible act of birth...we talked about "Liberty" Abby's cria from last year and decided this one should be appropriately know as "Justice" for Liberty (female) and "Justice" (Male). Liberty is a gorgeous female grey and white llama that has stolen the show...from the alpacas on the farm. She is the first to approach the fence line and offer"kisses' to a passerby. Justice will hopefully follow in his sister's footsteps. He is a beautiful grey, white and light brown llama. It is exciting to watch as they turn from not-so ugly ducklings into princes and princesses! Join us on the adventure, drive by or follow on the blog as we watch them grow!