Monday, December 31, 2012

Top 10 for 2012

This is the first year I am having a hard time thinking about what all we did this year. We have entered our 6th year as alpaca farmers, and I have to admit, it's starting to all blend together (in a good way!).

Top 10 for 2011 can be found here.

Looking back at that list, it's hard to remember that all those alpacas came to our farm that year!  We added 10 alpacas in 2011, plus had one cria added to our herd.  We also received our first color championship - that was exciting!!

2012 might better be known as the year of getting our herd in order.  While we have had cria every year, and we've added to our herd through sales and purchases, the focus this year has been at having fewer alpacas, but making them the best that we can.

1.  In 2012 we had six cria, the most we've ever had!  (links provided to their birth story)

 6/6/12 ~ OHVNA Raspberry Coolatta (Latte x Tucker)

6/7/12 OHVNA Storm Warning (AKA: Stormy) (Sancha x Greyt)

6/16/12 OHVNA Ruby (Jewel x Tucker)

8/4/12 OHVNA el Diablo (Victoria x Tucker) 

8/18/12 OHVNA Cornelia Marie (Bay x Alchemy) 

8/19/12 Night of Greyt Exxpectations AKA: Night  (Maddie x Greyt)

2.  This is the first year we haven't kept all of our cria.  

Despite six cria being born on our farm, only 1 of those six remains with us.   Usually we keep all our cria, at least until we have a chance to get them to an alpaca show.  But this year, we decided to be open to other options.

Raspberry is going to Ohio in February to be with her new farm.
Stormy is leaving in the next week to his new farm just a few miles north of us.
Diablo already went to a farm in Ohio.
Marie left on Christmas Eve to her new farm just north of us.
Night will be leaving in February.

That leaves us with Ruby.  And she sure is cute!!

3.  Looking over those birth stories reminds me that in 2012 I assisted with my first difficult birth.  In the past J has always been home to help and he's much more calm about it all than I am.  This year Zack and I were in a position to help and we did.  el Diablo was born healthy and strong.  (Link to the birth story is above with his picture in #1).


4.  We sponsored two alpacas shows - a first for us! 

We sponsored The Best of the US Alpaca Show in Columbus, Ohio in March of 2012.
We sponsored the Buckeye Alpaca Show in Columbus, Ohio in May of 2012.

5.  We donated two alpacas to a zoo so that others can learn and enjoy these wonderful creatures also.  Link to that story here.

6.  More alpacas left our farm this year than joined us.  This was done on purpose by us to lower our herd numbers.  We love alpacas, but we are in this for a business and sales are the whole point!

We have a few more leaving yet this month and more next month.
At that point we should be at 17 alpacas total:

Breeding boys ~ Greyt, Gabe (black), Gabe (beige), Vamil
Breeding girls ~ Cherry, Tehya, Jewel, Miss Kitty

Maidens (bred) ~ Rose, Mysteria, Cocoa
Maidens (not bred) ~ Gigi, Twilight, Lady Bing, Princess, Ruby, Patty

7.  We have girls bred for 2013.

When their pregnancy lasts on average 11.5 months, you have to plan it all out a year ahead of time.  Right now we believe we have 6 bred for 2013 (there are another 2 that are possibly bred). 

8.  This year is the first year Zack was able to help with hay.  In a family like ours where our kids are growing up on a farm, carrying hay is a big deal!  Up to this point he was too small and not strong enough.  Well, this year that changed!  He helped with his first hauling of hay.   I dream of the day he is stronger than me and I can give over more of my chores :)

9.   We added suris to our herd!

I know J said he would never do so, but something hit him this year and he wanted to do it.  So, we added Cherry and her cria Patty to our herd.  They are both suris.

For those that do not know, there are two types of alpacas - huacaya and suri.  We have always had all huacaya, until 2012.

Link to that blog post here.

10.  Zack was on TV!   (link to story here and link to the video can be found here).

When we attended the Great Midwest Alpaca Festival in Madison, Wisconsin, several people were taken in by Zack.  Before we knew it he was being interviewed by a TV crew.  His video has been on-line too.  

I can't help but think of all the changes that will be coming in 2013 ~ stay tuned!! Our adventures continue, that is for sure.

If you want to look back into our adventure further ~  a look in review:

+ Top 10 for 2009
+ Top 10 for 2010  

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