Alpacas originated in South America and are a member of the Camelid family. It is believed that they were created through selective breeding, heavily influenced by the Vicuna.
Camel Llama Vicuna
During the Spanish Conquest, close to 90% of the alpaca herd in South America was decimated in order to subjugate the native people. Incans took the remainder of their herds to secret locations to preserve them.
Photo Courtesy of Mulberry Alpacas, LLC Photo Courtesy of Shelales.com
In the mid 1800’s, an Englishman re-discovered the wonders of alpaca fleece , and in 1983, the first alpacas arrived in America.
*Alpacas originate from Peru, Bolivia and Chile
*Alpacas live from 15- 20 years
*Alpacas weigh between 100-200 lbs.
*Average gestation is 335 days with a single baby (cria) being delivered
during daylight hours
*Alpacas are generally hardy, surviving on grass and hay all year
*Alpacas are shorn once a year in the spring
*Alpacas do not have hooves, but pads similar to a dog’s
*Alpacas do not have top teeth, but a hard gum to chew their cud
*Alpacas eliminate in a communal area in the pasture/barn
*5-10 alpacas can be pastured per acre
*Alpacas come in over 22 basic colors
*Alpaca fiber is as soft as cashmere and stronger/warmer than
*There are two types of Alpacas - Suri and Huacaya. Suris have
long locks, while Huacayas appear "fluffy"
Cornerstone Farm Alpacas, LLC ~Daren & Chris Wingard~(757)-651-6335