My family took a trip to Pfafftown, NC for a tour of Rita Dee Farm where Alpaca’s are free to graze and are raised for their soft fiber. Denise and Spencer Yost own the farm and Denise offered to give us a tour. Our tour was special because of the new babies that have joined the herd! Winter Bliss (baby Alpaca above) and Hearts Desire are the new babies. They both had their own jackets to keep warm. I was able to bottle feed Winter Bliss as you will see in one of the photos below. The Alpacas are very gentle and a bit shy at times, but they couldn’t resist the allure of food!
Check out everything they are doing on their website. You can also find them on Facebook! http://www.rdfarms.com/
Special thanks to Denise Yost for giving us a tour.
Alpaca’s are social animals and I think they enjoyed the extra attention. Alpaca’s are definitely one of a kind. I couldn’t get over how cute they are! They are smaller than llamas and are bred for their meat, fiber, and leather. Llama’s are bulkier so they can be used as pack animals, but Alpacas are not used for that purpose. Alpaca’s were originally from South America and lived in the Andes mountains. They do well in cooler climates. They live in Peru, Chile, Bolivia, Argentina, and are domesticated within the United States.
Alpaca’s are eco-friendly and don't damage the habitat because of their padded feet, they fertilize the grass with their droppings, and they don't pull up the grass by its roots which makes for a more appealing pasture.
Winter Bliss is posed and ready for a meal. We had to bottle feed her because her mother was not being responsive to her. It was tricky at first, but I got the hang of it.
Winter Bliss had to be held in order to feed her. Once the bottle was in, I could tell she was thirsty. It took some time and patience, but she finished most of the bottle. Stroking her nose at times helped to make her more relaxed.
On the left is the mother of Winter Bliss. She was calm and we were able to stroke her back. Part of the goal for starting the farm is to have Alpaca’s that can be used for therapy. They also want to have educational programs to continue blessing the community.
We learned that Cuz is a prize winning Alpaca. He won his first blue ribbon at The Royal Alpaca Challenge in Conyers, GA on November 2nd.
Heart’s Desire was born at 9 a.m. 2 hours before our arrival. It was a special day to be able to see the new baby. The mama was making a fuss and moving around a lot which made it challenging for the baby to get nourishment. We were able to hear all sorts of interesting Alpaca noises!
Hearts Desire all bundled up.
I was able to learn some techniques for spinning on a drop spindle. Alpaca fiber works well for this. It can be dyed or used in its natural coloration. We plan on going back to see the annual Alpaca shearing. I look forward to sharing it with all my blog readers.