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What is an alpaca?

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What is an alpaca?

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An alpaca is a beautiful animal. A cousin to the llama, known for its luxurious fiber, and a member of the camelid family. The business of breeding alpacas is one of the fastest-growing livestock industries in the United States today. People from all walks of life are giving up traditional jobs for the easy-going and thoroughly enjoyable business of raising these gentle creatures. Alpacas are native to South America, particularly Peru, Bolivia, and Chile. They were first imported into the United States in 1984. Physical Characteristics Two kinds of Alpacas: Huacaya (pronounced wah-KI-ya) and Suri (pronounced surrey). Huacaya fiber is short, dense, crimpy and gives a woolly appearance. Suri fiber is silky and resembles pencil-like locks. Short and low set tail. Have soft padded feet with two toes. Do not have horns, hooves or claws, incisors, or upper teeth. Eat grass and chew cud. Adult alpacas generally weigh between 150 and 200 lbs. Average height is 36 inches at the withers. Have th

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” You may have seen them yourself and have mistaken them for their cousin the llama, which are very similar in their make-up. Here I hope to share with you information about the alpaca, to equip you with the knowledge you may need in the future when you may run across these gorgeous animals and their caretakers.

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The alpaca is a charming and valuable member of the camelid family. Alpacas are prized for their luxurious and costly fiber. Their babies are called cria. They are herd animals native to the Andes Mountains of South America and are very gentle, clean and make wonderful pets. Back to the top.

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