The Dead (not really he just looks it) Alpaca

"Dead Alpaca"

"Dead Alpaca"

I don’t care how long you’ve been alpaca ranching or if you want to do it in the future. This is a sight that will frequently scare you silly. There is an alpaca prone in your paddock/field. It looks like it could have been there quite some time.

Being relatively new to raising alpacas, I just stand there, horrified. What could have happened? What do I do now? Call the vet? Call the insurance company? How do you bury an alpaca?

I start toward the body of the gorgeous cria and the alpaca springs up, giving me a look of perturbed annoyance. Maybe I should shake the grain bucket next time. Sure, that would get me a couple dozen dirty looks when no grain was forthcoming.

By the way, the splotch of yellow is iodine, used to seal the navel of a newborn alpaca so bacteria don’t invade the body.

Zeke and Friends

Zeke and Friends

I have included this photo of Zeke (gosh I think it’s Zeke in the foreground) because it was taken several months later and you can see the “dead” alpaca happily munching hay in the background. We are getting tags for our alpacas since they are rapidly increasing and we need to know who is who. Probably once we have day-to-day contact and have read the tags enough, we’ll connect the alpacas with their names without looking at tags.

I guess I’ll learn. My mentor wasn’t panicked. There were no circling vultures or flies. Sigh. Another alpaca lesson. Am I ready for this?

Thanks to Alpacafarmgirl for the idea for this blog. I enjoy her blogs. If you haven’t been following her, you’re missing out on lots of useful info one alpacas, fleece and spinning, and life in general.


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7 Responses to “The Dead (not really he just looks it) Alpaca”

  1. Barefoot Beachbaby Says:

    First time I saw a “dead” alpaca, I ran out to the pasture in a panic. Now I just smile when I see them lounging on a sunny day and wish I could afford the time to join them! 🙂

  2. zenasurialpacas Says:

    I’m not to that point just yet. I panic more quietly now though. I may join that “if you can’t beat them, join them” idea early in the spring. Late spring it may be raining crias.

  3. tazzieval Says:

    LOL, that reminds me of our first calf. I saw it born, back to the house to get Mum some extra feed treats and the camera and ear tags etc, back to paddock all happy – GULP, where is calf? Mum had cleaned her up and hidden her in the rushes, but I thought someone had leapt the fence and taken her! Took us an hour to find that calf in the long pasture and growth – we have lovely stream running thru property and Mum had taken advantage to hide baby and get some lunch in. Our cattle savvy friends still laugh about that.

  4. zenasurialpacas Says:

    Sometimes I think our livestock is a bit smarter than we are. I doubt I’ll ever get used to the “dead animal” pose but my alpaca friends tell me I will.

  5. AlpacaFarmgirl Says:

    You’re so sweet to mention my blog! Thanks!
    I get a couple of calls from new breeders we are mentoring each year who tell me their alpaca is down sick in the field. What should they do? If it’s a sunny day I usually ask them to walk up on the alpaca and see what it does. Inevitably the alpaca hops up and everyone is relieved! Lol.

    It is believed that alpacas soak up necessary vitamin D by lying in the sun where their bellies can absorb it.

  6. zenasurialpacas Says:

    Thanks for the comment Katy. I’m trying to link a few of the best alpaca blogs into mine and until I figure out how to do that I figure I’ll give positive mentions.

    Yours is almost as good as having another mentor and you are very good about answering questions when you can. I don’t know how you manage all that you do.

  7. uberVU - social comments Says:

    Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Twitter by Zenasurialpacas: Undead Alpacas, not really a Halloweer preview.

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