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What is an alpaca?

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What is an alpaca?

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An alpaca is a camelid, a member of the camel family and a close relative to the llama. Alpacas are about one-third the size of a llama and are generally more docile. Alpacas weigh an average of 150 lbs. and are about 3 ft. tall at the shoulders. With a lifespan of between 15-20 years, the female spends most of her life gestating. Females begin breeding between 14 months and 2 years of age. Males begin breeding usually between 2 and 3 years of age. Pregnancies last around eleven and a half months and dams usually birth without intervention during daylight hours. Twins are extremely rare and single births are the norm.

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An alpaca is a member of the camelid family which include llamas. They are a two toed animal that are valued for their luxurious fiber. They were imported into the US in the late 1980’s from South American countries Peru and Chile, and have grown to a national herd size here of around 100,000. The largest herds can still be found in South America, although no importation is allowed into the US at this time. The average US farm has about 10-15 alpacas. Alpacas are about one-third the size of a llama and are generally more docile. Alpacas weigh an average of 150 lbs. and are about 3 ft. tall at the shoulders. With a lifespan of between 15-20 years, the female spends most of her life gestating. Females begin breeding between 14 months and 2 years of age. Males begin breeding usually between 2 and 3 years of age. Pregnancies last around eleven and a half months and dams usually birth without intervention during daylight hours. Twins are extremely rare and single births are the norm.

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The Alpaca is one of two domesticated members of the South American camelid family. The Huacaya Alpaca (the breed owned by Lazy J Alpacas) resembles a sheep in appearance, but is larger in size and has a long erect neck with a handsome head. Alpacas come in 22 natural colors, grow to approximately 3 feet tall at the shoulder, weigh between 120 and 185 pounds and live 15 to 25 years. (Please click here for Alpaca facts.

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Alpacas are members of the Camelid family, cousins to camels, llamas, guanacos, and vicuna. Alpacas are about half the size of llamas and have smaller ears, more rounded bodies, and are less inclined to spit. They have padded feet so cause minimal stress on their pastures. They live on average between 15 to 25 years, are 36 inches on average at the withers, and weigh on average 100 to 175 pounds. Their average gestation is 335 days, and they do not come into heat, but ovulate on demand, and have an average of one per year, twins are very rare. Birth weight is normally between 12-18 pounds, and babies (cria) can often stand and nurse within 30 to 60 minutes after birth. They come in 22 natural shades, white, shades of fawn, brown greys and black. There are two different kinds of alpacas Suri and Huacaya. Huacaya alpacas have a thick, dense, crimpy fiber and resemble teddy bears in full coats. Suri alpacas are more rare (about 10% of the population) and have very long, fine, dreadlock-ty

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Alpacas are camelids-cousins to camels, llamas, guanacos, and vicunas. They are smaller than llamas and guanacos, but larger than vicunas. Alpacas are about half the size of llamas and have proportionally smaller ears than their llama cousins. There are two different kinds of alpacas. The suri alpaca is the very rare alpaca and has very long, fine, dreadlock-type fiber. The huacaya alpaca is the second type of alpaca and is the more common of the two. The huacaya alpaca has thick, dense, crimpy fiber and resembles a teddy bear when in full coat.

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