Friday, April 8, 2011

Classic Dark Silver Grey

We arrived in Fort Wayne, Indiana, early this afternoon to check in for the Indiana Alpaca Invitational. We transported 9 alpacas in our trailer, 6 of our own, and 3 for Ashton Stone Alpacas.

Here they are peeking out the back gate while we unload the truck (don't worry, when we are driving we close the solid doors):

All 9 of them fit in there, with room to spare, though it's hard to see them all:

We had a lot of work to do so I rushed taking pictures, and those are the only two I managed to get in.

We set up our stall in record time. I don't know if we are just getting better at all of this and that is why it went faster, or if it was because we arrived here earlier than we usually do and there were no lines for anything.

Just like at the last show we decided to have our girl, Twilight, color checked by the judges. There are three levels to deciding what color class an alpaca shows in. The first decision is made by the alpaca owner. When you sign the alpaca up for the show, you register them for the color class you believe they should be in. We do our best to get this right from the start, and only ever had have changes with a couple of our animals that aren't a clear color, such as Twilight. Then at the show, all animals are color checked by a team of people who make sure the color the alpaca is registered as matches the color chart. (I've done color check at a show before and it's amazing what color some alpaca farmers *think* their animal is). The color check people hold a color card up to the animal, to their fiber right up next to the skin, to verify the color. Just like at the last show, the color check team suggested we have Twilight checked by the judge. She has grey fibers throughout her black blanket, but is it enough grey for the grey class? Or not enough grey, and she's an Indefinite Dark? At the last show the judges felt she was right at the borderline between the two and decided to put her in the Indefinite Dark Class. We were fine with this decision. We feel the animal will do best in the class the judge would most like the animal to be in anyway. Twilight received a 1st place in that class!! This time the judges discussed her at great length. We were not allowed to be a part of that discussion, I would have loved to hear all their insight. But we were told the final decision is that she will show as a Classic Dark Silver Grey!

I am excited about this for a couple reasons. For one, I don't agree with separating out the indefinite vs the grey. I believe the same genes create both, just some of the animals have more of the grey fibers than others. It's a matter of expression (how many grey fibers), but the same gene is at work. Therefore I believe they are the same and should be shown together. I know this isn't how the rules are set, and therefore when we do have an animal in the indefinite class, I accept that. But, I don't necessarily like it or agree with the way the rules are. I also am excited about this because then I can call her a "Dark Silver Grey". Not only does "grey" have marketing abilities (for people looking for grey animals), but also because people know what you mean when you call an animal a grey. To call an animal "indefinite" usually needs more explanation.

1 comment:

WonderWhyGal said...

I agree! Grays are indefinite and indefinites are gray. Argh! This is why I hate halter shows.

I'll be stopping by to say hello tomorrow morning.

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