Friday, April 29, 2016
Over the years, I have learned a few very economical things about raising alpacas that have stood me in good stead.
Ah! Large, rolling, grass pastures!
For example, LARGE GRASS PASTURES present a number of economies for the alpaca breeder. By my definition, "large, grass pastures" are large pastures that have more grass than the alpacas are able to consume. Anything less might look like a "pasture" but is really only a very large paddock. Below are listed a few of the economies derived in having large grass pastures:
#1. Large grass pastures surrounded by electric rope fencing are economical to build and maintain.
#2. Alpacas are generally healthier and are least stressed if they are given daily access to large grass pastures. Healthier and calmer alpacas require much less veterinary care. Because veterinary care can be quite expensive, the savings in health care are quite noticeable!
#3. The terrain of these pastures is also important. Alpacas, especially pregnant dams, crias, and young alpacas, need exercise, and large grass pastures with ROLLING HILLS are perfect for exercising alpacas. Most importantly, the benefit to pregnant dams grazing on these rolling hills is in the development of strong muscle tone in preparation for birthing. My alpaca dams almost always give birth standing up and without assistance, and their labors are relatively quick. In fact, with the exception of dystocia, the few dams that have had longer labors have been heavy and/or have not gotten enough exercise prior to birthing.
For those alpaca owners and breeders who have enough acreage for large grass pastures with adequate shade, I encourage you to get you alpacas out there!
Ah! THE BARN!
Plenty of grass for baby and me! [PATRISSE & PATIENCE]