Tuesday 30 June 2009

Alpacas at Glastonbury Festival?

Well they look more like llamas - while we were watching 'Bat For Lashes', I spotted this flag at the festival, and thinking they might be owners or breeders, I followed the pole down to the man on the end of it - apparently his wife has a fascination for alpacas, hence they used this flag to find each other in the crowd - hello again if you are reading this. Then looking back through our photo's, we noticed that it had been at the Bruce Springsteen show!

I didn't see anything else alpaca-related - I'll have to work on that for next year.

While I was away enjoying myself, Mrs. Smallholder heard a commotion from the ducks and chickens at tea-time on friday, and discovered a pile of feathers in the field - a hen taken by a fox - it seems the alpacas had gathered around the cria rather then save the chicken - spookily, I was watching Fleet Foxes on the Pyramid Stage at the time...

Looking forward to shearing soon - no doubt the girls are too.

Sunday 21 June 2009

4 days to Glastonbury Festival!

Through shortage of time, I haven't taken any photo's this week, so this weeks photo's are attributed to a professional, www.kerrybartlett.co.uk who (rightly), makes my efforts look amateurish, and I wish I had time and space to show more (well it is Fathers Day) ...
Ambrosia is doing well darting around, pronking, annoying her aunties, and as she came on time, mother Minnie is allowing me to go to Glastonbury Festival this weekend - I've checked the tent today, though I'm disappointed to report that the gazebo which I had erected for shade for the alpacas wasn't needed this week, though the hot weather is coming next week, but worse than that, strong winds on friday flipped it over the fence folding it up neatly, but irrepairably!

Sunday 14 June 2009

How cool is that?

Continuing our quest to find safe bathing (at a reasonable price) on a hot day, we are currently trying the B & Q Garden storage box It's got plenty of depth, alpaca length, but I think it's just a bit too deep to get the back legs into. As you can see, Moira tries to get her chest wet with a quick kneel down. I think if one of them did get completely into it and then sit down, she would displace all the water, and then probably roll the whole thing over, sort of capsizing on dry land!

I've put up a gazebo for a bit of extra shade - watch this space to see if they appreciate it...

Ambrosia has been charging about like a gazelle - she creeps up on me when I'm poo-picking, and also chases the chickens.

Monday 8 June 2009

Ambrosia steals the show

Forgot to mention last night - we had Open Gardens in the village on saturday, and we had been invited to open ours - so far so good - Mrs. Smallholder worked like a trojan for the last six weeks or so, getting the vegetable plot dug over and planted and flourishing despite the dry spring, and creating two large beds of new shrubs in the main garden - I even finally got around to fixing the green man to the wall along with the 'pot frames' (we've only been here 16 months) for the geraniums etc. Anyway we had over 50 visitors during the day, and most of them, on arrival said, "we've heard you've got alpacas, lets see them"! Mrs. Smallholder was not amused - I talked myself hoarse about alpacas, but a few people were interested in gardening, and the girls thought we had become a zoo or safari park with all the visitors staring at them! You've got to laugh. Oh, and there was a scarecrow competition, hence the picture in this blog: scare(d)crow.

Sunday 7 June 2009

Ambrosias first week

Ambrosia is 1 week old today. She seems to be doing very well, along with mum, Minnie. There has been an air of calm amongst the three adults, and they all look out for the new one if somebody approaches, and in the fierce heat earlier in the week, they all stood around Ambrosia to give shade.

I've put a small childs 'clamshell' sandpit as paddling pool, but it's not large enough for them to get into - they like to splash water with their front legs. I've looked at childrens paddling pools, and also a sheep footbath - I'd love to know what other breeders find successful for them to bathe in and keep cool - I don't want to have a broken leg or a pool that they don't use

Wednesday 3 June 2009

Hello, my name is Ambrosia

Our herd name is Apple Vale Alpacas because we live in a small area of apple orchards, and we are all going to be named after varieties of apples. Its been boiling hot here, and I can't wait to be allowed in the paddling pool like Moira and Pela' - mum took me under a tree for shade today. My owners planted a glade of trees for shade which was fenced off, but when Moira and Pela were allowed in this week, they started eating the leaves and shoots, so we are not allowed in now - I'm glad it's getting cooler! I am my owners first cria, and he's very proud and always got his camera out - I feel like a top model! Here are my photo's tonight: