Our original four boys came from Ardo Alpacas in Aberdeenshire. We are not alpaca breeders and have our boys purely as pets. Our experience is that you don't need to be a breeder and that a 'batchelor herd' can give much pleasure to the owner. We have 5 acres including our big garden and grazing for the boys, 15 miles north of Inverness, Scotland. I spin, knit, felt and crochet with the fleece from the boys.


Just a reminder that clicking on (most) of the photos will show them greatly enlarged.

Sunday, 12 June 2016

In the pen again.

During one of the better days this week we decided to pen the boys so that Faro and Fidget could have a drench and to trim some nails.  Faro gets a regular drench but we decided to do Fidget as well as a boost because he seems to slow up quite a bit when he has all his fleece on.  It's the same each year before shearing, then once he's sheared he's back to normal.  Having called the boys here they are plodding up the slope towards the pen.
The boys all go to the pen quite willingly although Fidget, nearest to the camera, can sometimes hang back and needs a push on the bum to go in!  There is a certain amount of humming always as they wait to find out what procedure the humans are going to inflict.
Fidget gives the humans a worried look but Faro behind him knows that it's drench time and nothing to worry about.
We drench Faro first then let him out of the pen, then drench Fidget.  As you see, he doesn't think much of the taste and later eats hay to get rid of it. Whilst penned we trimmed the nails of Fergus which grow at an amazing rate, so even though they will be trimmed at shearing in 3 weeks time, we decided to keep them in order.  The boys have also been having their Verm-X granules with their feed this week.  The boys are now 10years old and we got them exactly 9 years ago this week - better change the header to this blog!
Our house has become very popular with the House Martins this year.  We usually have one or two nests, this year we have five so all the relations must be on holiday too!  There are two nests in this photo, one was from last year and is occupied again and the new one is attached to it and you can see Mr & Mrs Martin posing for photos in their new abode. Amazing that these wee birds fly all the way down to Mediterranean countries and beyond for winter then come back to the same area in Spring.
And finally...............we have large clumps of Bluebells at the far end of our land adjoining the road.  They make a lovely sight especially since Whins (Gorse) and Broom are later in yellow bloom this year.


  1. It always surprises me just how willing the alpacas are to come in when we need to do something to them...injections, drenches etc, all probably quite unpleasant, yet they eagerly come in! I think they just trust us not to do anything toooo horrid to them!

  2. Hi Shirley, have you noticed the boys fleece fineness or character change over the years?

  3. Yes Dave, it has certainly become less fine, harsher and with increasing amounts of guard hairs. Darker boys tend to get grey hairs too. It's possible that gelding will also have an impact on fleece character over time. However, I'm still spinning their first cuts. Shirley.