Monday, January 9, 2012

New Additions

Any time you bring new alpacas into your herd, it tends to shake things up. We've had a variety of responses, from older males who instantly get mad and start a fight, to timid little ones who want to hide and can't wait for the rest of the herd to stop smelling them.

On Saturday we brought home ATA Peruvian Lady Bing, ATA Peruvian Shamballa, and ATA Peruvian Gigi. Lady Bing is of course the girl I have been bragging about for some time now. We are so excited to get her home! Shamballa is a young male who we are hoping will prove to do well in the show ring and become a herdsire for us. Gigi is actually who we were looking at when we discovered Lady Bing a couple months back. Gigi is a few days younger than our own Rose, both of whom will turn 2 years old this April.

Lady Bing is very alert and is watching everything that goes on. She watches me and seems to want to follow me, but if I take a step towards her, she will run off. She still isn't sure of our place.

Here is Gigi (a yearling white female):

Gigi took to our herd like she's been here all along. She just walked up to the hay buckets and eats, no one else seems to mind. We've had times when the herd won't let a new one by the hay so this is actually something to take notice of. I haven't seen her fight with anyone, which is actually kind of odd. Usually the herd has to sort out a pecking order.

Shamballa was placed with our yearling and juvi males. He was born in June of 2011 just like our own Thunder, so we figure those two would do well together. While Chaska is the leader in this pen (every alpaca herd has a leader and each pen has their own 'herd' status), he only briefly showed Shamballa that he is the leader (this amounted to Chaska trying to mount Shamballa and Shamballa giving him a little kick and then spit at him). Sig and Challenger welcomed him with a few sniffs and that was about it. I'm surprised there hasn't been more tossling at the boys pen. It was a very smooth transition for all. Shamballa had no problem figuring our grain time:

I was most concerned about grain time since at our farm we separate all the alpacas for grain. We taylor how much grain they get to their body score and health status. The first night Lady Bing insisted on trying to eat with our full figured girls. As could be expected, Lady Bing did not get any grain that night. I tried to separate her by herself later and gave her a bowl of grain but she was too leary of all her new surroundings and wouldn't eat. By Sunday morning I was able to get her and Gigi together with their grain and they both ate well:

I knew Lady Bing is a good size girl, but I wasn't expecting her, having been born this past summer (2011), to look the same size as our yearlings, Twilight and Rose, who were born in 2010!! But do keep in mind that Lady Bing has never been shorn, so she does have a lot of fiber on her body.

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