Popular and common questions asked about Alpacas

What are Alpacas ?

Alpacas are members of the south American Camelid family, domesticated and bred for their fibre.

Where do they come from?

They come mainly from Peru, Chile and Bolivia.

How many can I start with?

Alpacas are herd animals and should not be kept alone, so a minimum of two alpacas is necessary. Stocking rates are between 5 and 6 per acre depending on the condition of the grass.

How big do they grow?

Adults grow to about 1 metre at the shoulder and weigh between 60 and 80 kilos

How long do they live?

Alpacas live to between 15 and 25 years

Why do you keep them?

Alpacas are kept for their fibre which is soft and lustrous and is one of the strongest natural fibres. The fibre is comparable to Cashmere and is produced in 22 natural shades from white through fawn, brown and grey to black.

How often are they sheared?

Once a year preferably in May, June, or July when the weather is warmer and when the fibre is around 5 inches long.

Are Alpacas difficult to look after?

Not at all, they graze, eat hay, and pregnant/lactating females and all youngsters especially, require a daily supplement. Clean water is essential.

Do they need shelter?

This is optional, they are hardy to our climate all year round, but a shelter can be useful at any time to provide shade in the summer and shelter from the worst winter weather.