Wednesday, 8 July 2015


I am just coming to the end of sorting the alpaca fleece from shearing at the end of May.  Despite having a much reduced herd the yield has been very good.  When we sold off part of the herd we kept the youngest and best and this is beginning to pay dividends.

Annie, my favourite cria from last year (pictured on our website as a baby) has produced the most amazing fleece but sadly she managed to get lots of vegetation in it.   This needs to be cleaned or the fleece discarded as the mill cannot spin contaminated fleece.   Their machines will only  remove a certain amount of vegetation.  The time I spent cleaning her fleece was not cost effective, but there is nothing more pleasing than what is called a "baby" fleece i.e. the first fleece from a young alpaca.  The finished article is a bag of almost clean fleece which is a lovely fine light fawn and has lots of crimp.

The job is also very dusty so I try to do it at the end of the day so I can jump in the shower straight away.  Only two bags to go and next week it will be ready to send off for spinning.

Monday, 6 July 2015

Teaching the children in the garden

So this is how the next generation of alpacas learn where to find the best grass and how to prune hedges and shrubs - at mother's knee.

 All the cria seem to be thriving.  They are growing fast and getting very lively - chasing each other round the paddocks and up and over mounds.

I have been taking advantage of the good weather to bath all my dogs, except old Millie - it really would not be fair to expect a 15 year old to take a cold shower.  I have suggested to Mike that we have a bath and electric shower in dog room but am still waiting for an answer!!!

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Keeping cool dogs

The weather has been lovely today but rather hot for the animals.   The alpacas have been rolling around in dried mud areas and making them into dust baths.  Unfortunately they tend to stop rolling when I approach with the camera.

The dogs, on the other hand, have no such inhibitions and Mike took these photos of them helping me to fill the water trough outside the barn.