A Taste of Life at Windrush Alpacas

March 12, 2008

It’s Going To Be Busy In May!

As spring approaches our thoughts turn to spring crias.  Already a couple of the unborn crias can be seen kicking their mothers during the day.  Bjorn’s cria is especially active and does a merry dance most evenings.

In preparation for the birthing season I have run my due date report and May is going to be a really busy month as we have the majority of our females due to give birth that month.  They start off from the 5th May and continue on right through to the beginning of June.  Of course crias like babies come when they are ready, not when we want them to, so we will have to be prepared for flexibility on both ends of the birthing schedule.

I had better make sure I have my supply cupboard is replenished and that I have plenty of cria coats on hand in case the evenings are still a little chilly.  I have already spoken to our vet’s office to make sure he is not planning on taking a vacation that month, hopefully everything will be smooth sailing with the births but I want to know that he is available should we need him.

While it will be a busy month at least we will have the majority of births within a short time and just imagine all the fun those crias are going to have playing together.

I really like to have several crias in the same age group at the same time, they just seem to thrive better than a single cria among a bunch of adult alpacas, I think the companionship of the other crias stimulates them more.  That’s not to say it is wrong to have just one cria among a bunch of adults, sometimes that is inevitable and we have had that situation from time to time.  The other advantage of having several crias born at the same time is that should there be milk production problems with one of the dams we may be able to encourage a cria to nurse off a different dam as we did with little Zeus earlier this year.

At the same time that all the crias are being born we will also be entering shearing season.  It is going to take some juggling, but with us shearing our own alpacas it gives us the advantage of being able to allow a dam to give birth and bond with her cria prior to shearing her.  If we had a hired shearer coming in we would have to shear on the date he was here and that may not be the best for a dam in the very late stages of pregnancy.

So it’s going to be a busy May, but I hope it will also be an enjoyable one with lots of beautiful crias to watch and some happy sheared alpacas by the end of the month.

Rosemary

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