Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Herd Update

It has been a long while since I posted anything on our blog. It has been a busy and interesting year. We moved into our house in February of this year and spent the rest of this year putting up fences, remodeling and painting barns, harvesting and storing hay and lots of other chores to get our farm up and running. Since the last posting, we have acquired 3 more alpacas for a total of 8. We now have 1 herdsire, 1 young male, 5 bred females, and 1 maiden female. Here are some pictures of each of them.
This is Smokey, our full Peruvian dark silver grey herdsire. We feel very fortunate to have acquired him. He has sired some awesome crias so far. We have 3 of his babies due in 2009 on our farm and 3 others at CR Alpacas in Ohio, Windspun Alpacas in Michigan, and OakHaven Alpacas in Michigan.

This is our newest cria born on our farm. His name is Ashton Stones Jolly Roger. He was born this fall out of our our Smokey and Snowflake. We were so surprised by his color. He looks exactly like his paternal granddam Lady Liberty. He is looking very nice so far and we hope to start showing him in 2009.

This is Big Willows Lady Liberty. She is the alpha female on our farm. She keeps everyone else in line and is always on the look out for danger. She has an attitude like no other. She spits and screams anytime we have to touch her. Despite her nasty attitude, she is my favorite foundation female. She is a full Peruvian Beauty. I love her vicuna markings and she has nice fiber and conformation for an older breeding female. We own both of her previous offspring, Smokey and Appalachia. She is due in May 2009. We are excited for this cria as we bred her to a really nice male, Peruvian Snowstorm, at Irish Valley Farms.

This is Big Willows Maree Sol. We purchased her summer of 2008. We decided to add her to our herd because we wanted another full peruvian female with good bloodlines that we could breed with our full peruvian male Smokey. She is a big girl and loves to eat. She tips the scale at 236 lbs. She is about 70 lbs heavier than any of our other alpacas. It took some time to get her pregnant this summer as she is overweight. It finally happened though and she is due with a Smokey cria July of 2009.

This is Peruvian Bellesa, our newest addition. She is a full peruvian rose grey import. She was imported in 1998 from Peru, the last year alpacas were able to be imported in the USA. She is not at our farm yet and is being boarded at Evergreen Elegant Alpacas in Indiana while she is being bred to the famous Peruvian Macusani for a late fall 2009 cria. We are very excited to add her to our herd and have been keeping an eye on her for over a year before we actually purchased her. We hope to produce full peruvian grey offspring out of her and Smokey in the future. ( Pictured with her is her 2008 cria Butch Cassidy of Evergreen Elegant Alpacas)

This is our very first cria born on our farm. Her name is Ashton Stones Appalachia. She is a very sweet girl as she was bottle fed because her mother had the worst case of mastitis in an alpaca that our vet had ever seen. Now she is very friendly and follows us everywhere looking for snacks. Her features look very similar to her mother Lady and we are hoping that she can carry on Lady's amazing genes to the next generation. We plan to breed her to an amazing black male named No Small Change of Windspun Alpacas/Irish Valley Farms. She is one of my favorites!

This is Cinderella. She is definitely the blonde of the herd. She is very easy going and tends to be at the bottom of the pecking order. She is very sweet though and knows to run to us when we are passing out grain because we will keep the rest from spitting on her and stealing her grain. She is bred to Smokey for an August 2009 cria. We are excited to see if we will get a grey cria out of 2 grey parents as they both have lots of grey in their heritages.

Last, but not least, is Snowflake, our newest Mommy. Snowy is a sweet girl and just had Jolly Roger out of Smokey. This was her first cria and she has been an excellant mother. She was rebred to Smokey for an August 2009 cria. Snowflake was one of the first alpacas we purchased in 2006 when she was just a cria herself.

So, if is December of 2008...two years after we bought our first 2 alpacas Lady and Snowflake in December of 2006. We are up to 8 alpacas now with 5 babies due in 2009. We don't plan on buying any more alpacas in the near future....although that is what we said after Cinderella... and then again after Maree Sol...and then again after Bellesa, so we will see what the future hold for our farm. Our plan is to continue to build up our herd in the next few years with the current animals we have as the economy slowly returns back to normal.

1 comment:

Profitable Growth Partners said...

Cool update on the new farm. The place looks great! You guys are on your way. Congratulations! Dad.