Today we had Peter Aitken a specialist camelid vet come and take blood from 6 of our alpacas which will be spun down for plasma. Crias are born without any antibodies and the first milk, or colostrum,  is essential for the transfer of these antibodies from their mothers. They must receive this within the first few hours of life.  Failure of passive transfer results in crias getting possibly fatal infections, or just failing to thrive and a plasma transfusion boosts their immune system and is often life saving. 

The plasma will be stored frozen and used if and when we need it for a cria who we believe didn't get enough colostrum for one reason or another, hopefully we won't need it, so it's a bit like insurance.

Our donors were all very well behaved, thanks to Peter's expertise and good preparation. They were very gently chuckered with a soft thick rope so that they stayed still and it was then just a matter of holding their heads still.  Each one only took a few minutes and the whole procedure was stress free, all done and back out in the field by 10am.

If you look closely you'll see the hind feet tucked up in the rope.
Now that it's July we will start our matings for the year over the next 4-6 weeks, we do this so that our crias come after the shows and hopefully before August, leaving us free to go out on jollies next year.

Our new Snowmass boys will be arriving here any day, very exciting. In the meantime we have our own lovely homebred boys The Sorcerer, and Eros, today they had their first hot dates.  Both boys are two years old this summer and I was very keen to get them working, I have a few females for them, plus they have some outside services lined up. I wanted to give them plenty of time and some gentle and experienced females - the last thing a virgin boy needs is to be spat at or kicked!

The Sorcerer, our grey Ardingly son, was very keen - my goodness he was like a pro! Straight on, ogling really loudly and no messing about! Eros, son of Snowmass Incan King, wasn't far behind him either, and he too had a very impressive orgle on him, but unfortunately the ground was sloping a bit away from him and so he had to work hard to stay on board, certainly didn't seem to put him off! The boys worked really well and the girls loved them - they went back to their field, reluctant to leave their ladies and definitely strutted their stuff in front of the others!

This will be interesting - Eros is out of our appaloosa female Ena and by Incan King a light brown,
 could well result in an appaloosa - Dove here has had multi's in the past.


  1. Your females must be better behaved with their birthing than ours if you can plan your social life around their birthing. I was supposed to be having a free couple of weeks to get to the hairdressers etc ( essential stuff) but Chaska ( average 343) is now 373!!!

    1. Well it's a plan - doesn't always work! Hope Chaska allows you a visit to the hairdressers soon!