The hard part of alpaca farming

We bought our first alpacas in October 2005. We had decided to start raising alpacas and after spending time researching alpacas, we found Tequila and her cria Sensational Mahogany. Tequila has given us three beautiful boys, including Sensational Mahogany, Caramelo, and most recently Obsydyan, and three fabulous girls, Henrietta Ruth, Sugar Cookie, and The Black Pearl. These beautiful alpacas range in color from pale fawn to true black.
We lost Tequila on Dec 13, 2011. She was 17 years old and had given birth to 13 alpacas in her lifetime. Tequila provided an excellent foundation for our herd. She had a persistently fine fiber which she has passed on to her daughters who are now producing fabulous crias of their own.

Tequila and Obsydyan, Dec 12, 2011

Losing Tequila was hard, but unfortunately raising livestock of any kind will occasionally come with loss. We’ve been blessed to not lose any of our alpacas before this year, but we were prepared that it would happen at some time. Tequila died peacefully of old age (alpacas live an average 15-25 years).  She was out grazing a few hours before we found her. The hardest part about losing Tequila was the fact that she was still nursing a six week old cria at the time of her death.
Obsydyan was Tequila’s last cria. He was a good size, 33 pounds, when she died, but still nursing and very much in need of his mother. It was heart breaking to see him look for her after she was buried. Our first priority was to take care of Obsydyan. Alpaca crias are not anxious to take milk from a bottle, even when they are little. We were concerned about trying to get Syd to begin drinking from a bottle, but started working with him on that and then started to see if we could get one of our other alpacas to adopt him. Read on for the very happy ending to the story.

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