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Thursday, February 23, 2017

Elodora's Troubador by Rockstar is Tired of Winter & Ready for Spring

The weather seems to have broken here in the Gallatin valley, signaling to all of us at Spanish Peaks Alpacas and Shearing that spring is well on its way here, or at least we hope it is!
Spring brings to the farm a myriad of exciting things. The alpacas are more active roaming out into the pastures more but before the spring growth comes they have to be kept away from the tender, delicate buds of grass. Then they are again confined to their barn areas. The locks of the Suri alpacas are getting long but also starting to look a bit fuzzy- they’ll be begging to be sheared for summer before long.
This spring is particularly exciting because we have two alpacas who are expecting crias sometime in the beginning of May. Both Shelby and Emerald are experiencing healthy, normal pregnancies and should deliver healthy baby alpacas to join our little herd. This means that May and June are great months to come and visit our little farm and bring the kiddos out to experience a whole new kind of animal.
Spring time is also very exciting as it signals an end to the ski season and a beginning to summer ventures here at Spanish Peaks Alpacas like farmer’s markets, shearing season, and, later in the year, breeding season.
This year’s breeding season is especially exciting because we have a new addition to our Alpaca herd: Eldora's Troubador by Rockstar. At nearly five years old, Toubador is a true champion among alpacas with distinct beige coloring and rankings in the top 3% for EPDs in fineness and comfort factor. We traveled all the way to Wyoming last fall to pick up Troubador from the transport service, Oregon where he was born, was a bit far away for us. He is such a great addition to our herd. Troubador will undoubtedly sire many champion suri alpacas with us and he will be available for stud as well! Contact us for more info or to make arrangements to introduce this champion line into your own alpaca herd.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Shearing time!

after my 1st shorn alpaca during the seminar in Oregon

after my 1st shorn alpaca during the seminar in Oregon

Shearing adventure for many of you is already gone but for the Rocky Mountain region and for us at Spanish Peaks Alpacas it has just begun!

I attended Premium Harvest's Shearing seminar in Oregon last weekend and for 3 days I learned about anything and everything possible to make shearing time a fun time. Franc is awesome and he can explain so much and our seminar group got a good amount of guidance how to shear, remove and preserve the best fleece without 2nd cuts and how to skirt and collect the best alpaca hair. We even sheared a Llama standing up! One day I need to purchase a second electric shear and a few more combs and cutters to have enough, also need better shearing mats, and much more, but not this year!

Also I met the best hosts at Eldora Suri Alpacas south of Portland. Leanne was so helpful to explain to me everything that she is doing. I saw little chickens hatching in an incubator, met their livestock guard dogs, some cats, wonderful Suris, and so much more - all in all it was well worth it to travel 13 hours in one direction by myself. I had a great time and learned a lot! And after my herd is shorn and 64 more alpacas shorn I will become a certified shearer! How cool is that?

Last year during shearing time I was stressed and exhausted when I sheared my own alpacas here at Spanish Peaks Alpacas, this year I sheared the first third of our herd in 2 days and I had fun! I still was exhausted though. I am not the youngest anymore to crawl around and shear, and collect fleece and cut toenails and do teeth, but with the help of my two men (husband and son) we did just fine. My back was aching, my hips are sore, but 13 of my alpacas are happy to be naked.

To all of you who still have to shear your alpacas: Happy clipping!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Dance With Your Alpacas

I was a dancer and I was a Cranio Sacral Therapist which is one of the most gentle, deep going non-manipulative therapies there is. So catching your alpacas, chasing them, dragging them did not work for me. I am using the Marty McGee Bennett's Camelidynamics method to handle my animas.

Come and learn with me in future workshops.

2 days with 2-5 people

Cost: 400.00 per workshop (plus travel costs if not at my ranch)

Get a group together and come dance with me and my alpacas

Or hire me to come to your Farm / Ranch.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

My first Workshop as a Camelidynamics Senior Consultant

Monday, June 25, 2012

Always something exiting happening

Today I went out to the boy's pasture to clean up pacapoo. There was our Chuck Norris with his head in the fence eating the greener grass on the other side towards the road. As I realized that he wasn't too happy anymore I tried to get him back to where he should be but without luck. I was pulling and bending the square of the fence but he was really stuck. And then something really bad happened. He got so scared that he started to scream which attracked Leo our dog. He came running from the porch out in to the road and jumped on Chucky and started to bite his neck. Chucky got wilder and now his front feet were through the lower part of the fence too. I had to run out to grab Leo by his collar and took him home then I got the wire cutters and started to cut our boy out. In the meantime the other alpacas took advantage of this dreadful situation and jumped on to Chucky from behind! Finally I got the situation resolved and the fence patched up. Then I looked down to my legs and arms. I have cuts and bruises now everywhere and my pants were completely torn apart. Chucky was bleeding out of several bites and cuts but not so bad that I didn't have to call the vet. I watched him the rest of the day. It was probably the first time ever that he didn't fight with any of the other boys!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

We did it!

with a horse trailer driving east!

with a horse trailer driving east!

Just a short note: Our herd grew more than half last weekend. We added 16 more Suri Alpacas to our 13.
It was a quick trip to Minnesota, loaded up the trailer and went back home.
I will explain soon why we did this and what the circumstances are.
We can proudly say now that we have the biggest gray Suri Alpaca herd in Montana and with the best pedigree for sale. All the animals are gorgeous, sweet - and are getting ready for shearing time!
Shearing days are June 5 and June 6, 2012! We will have lots of nice and super fine alpaca fleece.
come on boys, into the trailer

come on boys, into the trailer

everybody in?

everybody in?

the new croud meeting the

the new croud meeting the "old"

girls were dancing with each other

girls were dancing with each other

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Our sick Alpaca on her way to recovery? - Hopefully!

One half tube of Succeed twice a day

One half tube of Succeed twice a day

It was the time to put Akianna on the scale again... my eyes glued to the digital numbers hoping that the last digits won't be under 30. She was weighing about 131 pounds before and if she would loose more she would be really going downhill. But no! The numbers on the display showed more than 135 lbs! What a relief. She gained 4 pounds at least. I am feeding her "Succeed" for horses twice a day a half a tube and her cria Apache hasn't found a way to her still very full utter. As long as she is producing milk she will put a lot of energy into it which will drain her too much. In a few weeks the milk production should slowly stop and she should be dried up and then really gain more weight fast! This can take between 2 and 6 weeks.

On the side note Apache is doing fine. he is still with the other group of the females. In the morning hours when I come into the barn he is usually cushed snuggled up with the other cria girl which is over 70 lbs already. He is still much smaller and lighter but he is eating grain and hay like a pro and in just a little while when his back is strong enough he will be able to join the boys and roughhouse with them.


Friday, March 23, 2012

What could be wrong with our Alpaca?

Akianna, healthy and strong

Akianna, healthy and strong

Akianna, our black gorgeous Suri Alpaca had her cria September 25, 2011, a medium rose gray apalooza boy. We named him Apache because of the "sweater" he is wearing! She was a healthy mother but not too much into caring for her cria compared to the other dam Twilight who had her cria on the same day.
About by the end of November we realized, that she was not as perky as the other female alpacas. She moved slower, it took her longer to get on to her 4 legs and she didn't seem to be too enthusiastic about reaching the fresh food we provided. She had froth around her mouth almost every morning we came to the barn and she seamed depressed. We fed her Probiotics for a while - no real change around her mouth, but there were a few days we she seemed to be better in between some days where she had more foam.
Around Christmas we realized that Apache was nursing also from Twilight which we tried to interrupt, but slowly but surely we thought that it was a blessing to have such a great foster mother in Twilight and that it was THE advantage for both Alpacas, Akianna and Apache.
After another few weeks we had some blood work done on her - no real results. "We could give her one shot of Antibiothiks", our vet said. After 2 weeks of no change: "Well lets give her another one".... Then I took some fecal sample to a lab and then I heard this from our vet: "Well she could have SOME worms, let's give her some anti worm injection"...still no obvious change in our Suri Alpaca.
Then we decided we had to take more actions to get her back to her strength and health and we took her in to our vet's clinic for an x-ray and ultrasound because he said that she might have a herniated diaphragm - Really? no image displayed any of this diagnoses so no doubt we started to call the best vets in this country and everybody said, "No - not likely"!
A change in vets is approaching - obviously!
Apache now has reached almost 55 lbs and it was time to give Akianna a well deserved brake from her motherhood. We didn't count on the smartness of those animals, Akianna and Apache found every little loop hole to still provide mother's milk to him, no boundaries helped, he drank through Coral panels, fences, and he also discovered in no time some carelessly forgotten open gates and slipped through back to his warm mother's milk. Hope from now on we succeed with his weaning procedure and hopefully that will get her strength and weightgain up.
Next Tuesday our new vet is coming to our Alpaca Farm. We will start from point 0 again. Blood test, Fecal test, parasites? ...
I am pretty positive she will be healthy again. Everybody who reads that, please send her good energy for her recovery! Thank you!
We will keep you all posted what we find out.
Akianna and her cria Apache

Akianna and her cria Apache