Filming and lunching

We had an interesting day yesterday ... we were approached by a Masters degree media student who wanted to come and film a short article on an alpaca business and how it was faring in the recesssion ..... thankfully it was the most perfect day, sunny and still, first for a while, and the alpacas behaved impeccably, bribed most of the time by food! Our clients Ken and Liz also kindly came and were interviewed on their views as new owners. We're looking forward to seeing the end result, if its not too embarrassing I'll post it on the website.

I've joined the Hampshire Farm Womens Club, they came to us on a visit to learn about alpacas a couple of months ago. It's very interesting to talk to these ladies - many have been farming all their lives. They meet once a month and go to all sorts of different venues, today we had a christmas cookery demonstration and then tasted it all, yummy and such a complete change for me I actually found it very relaxing... I may even try out the recipes at home - I'm looking forward to the vineyard visit!!

Very wild weather

For the second morning in a row we have woken to torrential rain and strong winds ... most of our trees are now bare of their stunningly colourful leaves, the best I can remember in years, and it feels really cold in the wind too. The pacas were all hunkered down in the middle of the fields when I looked out at them first thing - do they think the shelter is going to blow down maybe?! We can always tell how much rain we've had by how flooded our lunge ring is - looked like a duck pond this morning - 27 mm last 24 hours! They haven't wanted much hay the last few weeks, the grass is still lovely and although not as nutritious as spring grass it seems to have kept them all in peak condition, even fat in some cases. However, with all this wet stuff arriving I am offering them all extra hay as they need the dry matter, (remember to renew it every 3/4 days - think of it as bread - it goes stale) and of course their daily ration of camelibra. The lactating females are also getting alfalfa pellets and as soon as the frosts start to arrive some sugar beet too, this really helps with milk production and helps keep them warm. The crias love it too and as some of them will be weaned soon its good to get them all eating the hard feed.

Really noticing the dark evenings now - short days means I have to be more organised to get it all done, not a bad thing and rainy days means I can catch up in the office and surf ebay looking for VW Campervans!!


Where does the time go - not blogged for ages. It's been a busy day and it's still going, but at least I have a glass of wine beside me now! We had our trusty scanner Alan Fillingham round this morning. 28 females scanned, I knew that 2 were empty as they'd sat again recently on spit offs, but another two I wasn't sure of also scanned empty, but looked as though they had been pregnant and were reabsorbing - hense the slightly confusing spit offs.... they probably had a good reason, and it does just happen every now and then, but not what we wanted and I'm a bit disappointed, they'll have to wait til next year now. However, 24 positive which is brillient. Five of those go off to their new homes this week and so it gives us 18 cria to come next summer - just can't wait as apart from 2 they're all to the Snowmass boys.


Meanwhile all the cria are growing really well, some getting rather big and could be weaned, but as the mums are holding good condition we'll let them stay on til they're six months old or so

The Autumn colours are just fabulous this year round here, the pacas look lovely, as if they're joining in with the trees, always gets me in the mood for taking loads of pictures .. thought the pumpkins were fab and its been my screen saver for ages.