A Taste of Life at Windrush Alpacas

May 2, 2016

Visit the Alpacas after their Makeover!

IMG_20160409_141656799Humans aren’t the only ones who like to strut new styles in Spring! Our Alpaca herd gets their own ‘makeovers’ in Spring when we shear their winter coats!

Come to our next Open Farm Day on Saturday, May 14 to see our newly shorn alpacas, tour the farm and learn how we use the soft fleece and fibers from the alpacas.  Visit us sometime between 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. to learn about, see and touch the alpacas!

After your pasture tour, step into our Farm store where you will find an incredible selection of alpaca yarn products. Although OFD is after Mother’s Day, ask mom to join you as we are sure you will find a ‘little something’ to brighten your mom’s day, or maybe a soon-to-be graduate, or a blushing June bride. Alpaca yarns are hypo-allergenic, as soft as cashmere and incredibly warm. You can never go wrong when you give a gift made from alpaca yarns.

Or, we can provide a very unique gift! While you are visiting, sign up for our Adopt-a-Paca! Program. Choose which alpaca you would like to sponsor – or give as a gift! In addition to receiving a glossy photo of your special alpaca, you will also receive a certificate of sponsorship of your very own alpaca.

If you have been here before – we welcome you back! Every Open Farm Day provides for a different experience.  Bring your Mom, a friend, your spouse, even your cousins and grandma! There is something for everyone at Windrush Alpaca Open Farm Day

We have ample free parking, it’s free admission for everyone, and we even offer cold refreshments to our visitors. Windrush Alpacas farm is located us 1-1/4 miles south of Brady on CRM. Watch our Facebook page for updates http://www.facebook.com/WindrushAlpacas.

For more information, call us at 575-683-5177 or visit our website at www.windrushalpacas.com, shop online at http://www.windrushalpacas.net/store/ , or sign up for our newsletter at http://eepurl.com/xhiwn! Learn more about our Adopt-a-Program here http://www.windrushalpacas.com/pages/2087/adopt-a-paca .

 

April 28, 2014

Family Fun Day at Windrush Alpacas!

Dolce and CinnamonBring your whole family, your 4-H or scout group, or even your classmates to our next monthly Open Farm Day Event and Farm Store Shopping Experience!

On Saturday, May 10, 2014 between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. Windrush Alpacas will be open to the public. Spend some time meeting our curious alpaca, participating in some interactive educational demonstrations, and shopping for interesting and unique alpaca fiber products in our store.

Everyone is welcome to take a guided tour of our Alpaca Farm and learn about alpacas, what they’re really like, and how we care for them. Discover why alpaca fleece is super soft, warmer than wool and highly sought after. We’ll explain the shearing procedure and the process the raw fibers go through to become a usable product to be made into luxurious items for human (and pet) comfort.

Then you can browse our Farm Store collection of alpaca products — some items made from our very own alpacas — including alpaca fiber bird-nesting balls which are great for spring birds! And if you’re a crafter, we also offer yarns, roving, batting and needle felting kits. We have toys for children, toys for pets and bedding for pets, too.

If you’ve been here before, you’re welcome to come again! Visit your favorite alpacas and make new friends.

Join our very popular Adopt-a-Paca Program! You can sponsor a real, live alpaca for one full year. You’ll receive a glossy photo and other goodies. Pick out your paca while you’re on the farm tour!

We always offer free admission, free parking and free refreshments. Come join us 1-1/4 miles south of Brady on CRM for a unique and fun day.

For more information, call us at 575-683-5177 or visit our website at http://www.windrushalpacas.com. Also, you can Like us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/WindrushAlpacas, shop online at http://www.windrushalpacas.net/store/ , and sign up for our newsletter at http://eepurl.com/xhiwn!

 

March 31, 2014

Open Farm Day Event on April 12th!

Filed under: Adopt A Paca, Alpaca Fiber, Family, Open Farm Day — Tags: , , — alpacalady @ 9:36 am

Full Fleece-Fluffy Alpacas at Windrush Alpacas Open Farm Day!

Whisper March 2012Windrush Alpacas will host an Open Farm Day Event on Saturday, April 12, 2014 between 10 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. Come out to our farm with your family and friends and see how adorable our alpacas look in their full winter coats before they get sheared for the summer.

Tour our Alpaca Farm and learn about alpacas, what they’re really like, and how we care for them. Learn why alpaca fleece is super soft, warmer than wool and highly sought after. We’ll explain the shearing procedure and the process the raw fibers go through to become a usable product to be made into luxurious items for human (and pet) comfort. These interactive tours are open to people of all ages – everyone is welcome!

Then you can browse our Farm Store collection of alpaca products — some items made from our very own alpacas — including alpaca fiber bird-nesting balls which are great for spring birds! And if you’re a crafter, we also offer yarns, roving, batting and needle felting kits. We have toys for children, toys for pets and bedding for pets, too.

Sign up for our Adopt-a-Paca Program – it’s become quite popular! You can sponsor a real, live alpaca for one full year. You’ll receive a glossy photo and other goodies. Pick out your paca while you’re on the tour!

We always offer free admission, free parking and free refreshments. Come join us 1-1/4 miles south of Brady on CRM for a unique and fun day you can enjoy with your whole family.

For more information, call us at 575-683-5177 or visit our website at http://www.windrushalpacas.com. Also, you can Like us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/WindrushAlpacas, shop online at http://www.windrushalpacas.net/store/ , and sign up for our newsletter at http://eepurl.com/xhiwn!

January 28, 2014

Valentine’s Day is coming…snuggle up!

Filed under: Family, General, Open Farm Day — Tags: , , — alpacalady @ 3:49 pm

PJVisit Windrush Alpacas on Saturday, February 8, 2014 between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. during our monthly Open Farm Day Event and Farm Store Shopping Experience.  After touring our Alpaca Farm, learning about alpacas and what they’re really like, you can shop for one of the most memorable gifts you could give someone you love.

Nothing quite says “love” like snuggling does, so give your honey something to snuggle like a cuddly and cute Pacabuddy—they stand out in a crowd of teddy bears—or a luxuriously soft alpaca fiber wrap, scarf or the most comfortable socks ever!

If you want to really surprise your honey…participate in our Adopt-a-Paca Program and sponsor an alpaca in your loved-one’s name for one year! They’ll receive a glossy photo, pen pal letters, and other goodies all year long!

This is an event that can be enjoyed by your whole family… from toddlers to teens to great-grandparents! Be ready to have a super unique and fun experience.

We always offer free admission, free parking and free (hot) refreshments. Come join us 1-1/4 miles south of Brady on CRM for a unique and fun day you can enjoy with your whole family.

For more information, call us at 575-683-5177 or visit our website at www.windrushalpacas.com. Also, you can Like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/WindrushAlpacas and shop online at http://www.windrushalpacas.net/store/ and sign up for our newsletter!

January 2, 2014

Get to know alpacas!

Filed under: Family, General, Open Farm Day — Tags: , — alpacalady @ 7:48 pm

PrideOn Saturday, January 11, 2014 from 10:00-3:00 Windrush Alpacas will be open for an Open Farm Day Event offering tours of our working alpaca farm (if the weather cooperates) and letting visitors interact with our alpacas during educational demonstrations.  If it’s cold or windy, no worries—we’ll bring one of our friendly alpacas into our Farm Store!

Remember that alpaca is ‘the fiber of the Gods’ and not only do we produce it, we sell toasty, warm alpaca products as well. Warmer than wool and softer than cashmere, we have luxuriously soft alpaca scarves, gloves, mittens, and hats… and everyone’s favorite socks and slippers.

We always offer free admission, free parking and free (hot) refreshments. Come join us 1-1/4 miles south of Brady on CRM for a unique and fun day you can enjoy with your whole family.

For more information, call us at 575-683-5177 or visit our website at www.windrushalpacas.com. Also, you can Like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/WindrushAlpacas and shop online at http://www.windrushalpacas.net/store/ and sign up for our newsletter!

December 9, 2013

December’s Open Farm Day Event!

Filed under: Alpacas, Family, Open Farm Day — Tags: , — alpacalady @ 7:01 pm

12.14.13 Farm Day flyer

April 8, 2013

Open Farm Day is Saturday!

Filed under: alpaca products, Family, General, Open Farm Day — Tags: — alpacalady @ 10:20 am

4.13.13 Farm Day flyer

February 25, 2013

Even alpacas like to have friends

A question was posted recently on one of the online alpaca groups I belong to:

“Do alpacas make friends and if so do they remember those friends if they are separated and meet up again?”

The answer from alpaca owners was a resounding “Yes”.  There were many mentions of alpacas who bonded with other alpacas, some were related others not.  Stories of alpacas recognizing past friends at shows or when they met up at farms were also recounted.

Over the years we have witnessed the strong bonds that alpacas form with each other.  Certainly alpacas recognize their own family groups and seem to have stronger bonds with those alpacas (except for our alpaca Queen, for as far as Queen is concerned once those crias are weaned they are on their own!).    But it is not only family ties that bind alpacas together, they definitely also make friends.

We recently witnessed an example of this when we moved the two boys in our current weaning group, Patton and Leo, over to the Junior Males pen.  Patton and Leo were part of a group that consisted of five boys and seven girls.  Three of the boys Sentry, MacArthur and Espresso were moved over to the Junior Males pen a few months ago, but we decided to keep Leo and Patton back in the weanling pen for a little longer.  Patton was small for his age and we were concerned he would receive too much rough housing attention from the other males.  Leo was a tough boy to wean, at our first attempt he became distraught at being separated from his dam Velvet and tried to break through fences to get to her so we put Leo back with Velvet for a little longer until we felt he was able to better handle the separation.  Over time we could tell that Leo had matured more and was ready to be weaned so he soon joined the other weanlings.  This time Leo handled the separation from Velvet much better.  When Leo started to show too much interest in the weanling females (when he matured he really matured!) we decided that it was time to move him and Patton into the Junior Males pen.

Our process for introducing males to a new group is to create a smaller pen within the pen the males are being moved to.  We then put the new boys plus a couple of mellow boys from the existing group in that pen too.  The smaller group can have nose to nose contact with the other boys and will remain in that pen for a week to two weeks.  Usually by that time the novelty of the new arrivals wears off and when we let everyone get together we typically have very few problems.   We also make that final introduction at feeding time so that there is an additional distraction.

When the time came for Leo and Patton to meet the other junior males all went well.   Soon they were wandering around, checking out their new surroundings and new pen mates.  It was then we noticed something else, that Sentry was almost glued to Patton’s side!  Sentry was so happy to meet his buddy Patton again!

When the weanling boys had all been together prior to weaning they all got along well, but we hadn’t realized how much Sentry liked Patton until we saw them together again.  Sentry would not let the other boys mess with Patton and Patton was pleased to have his buddy by his side, even though Sentry is now considerably bigger than Patton.

Patton with his buddy Sentry

Patton with his buddy Sentry (Sentry is the brown alpaca taking it easy in the background)

Alpacas are most definitely a herd animal, which is why we tell people that you should never have a lone alpaca.  We have been fortunate to witness alpacas in our herd group over a considerable period of time and know that they do form bonds.  When they are with their families or their buddies they are happy, separate them and it definitely causes them some stress.

Sometimes though it is inevitable that those bonds are going to be broken.  Male and female crias that grow up together are not going to be pastured together, alpacas that are sold to other breeders will often be sold without their friends (unless we can work out a great deal with the new owners and we will try and do that when possible) and of course at times an alpaca will pass away leaving a buddy behind.   Any time there is going to be a separation we do our best to manage it well; probiotics to keep the alpacas rumen functioning well and to supply B vitamins to help them handle the stress of separation, Rescue Remedy to help them deal with the loss, over time the alpacas do adjust.   It is sometimes a fine balancing act to keep the herd happy and run a successful alpaca business, but we do our best to respect the alpacas while also keeping our business functioning.  Then of course there are the happy reunions we sometimes see, such as Patton and Sentry or a female who comes back to the farm for a breeding and is happily reunited with her dam or her sister for the duration of her stay.

So yes, alpacas do make friends and do remember those friends – and sometimes those friends can also be humans, but that’s a subject for another time 🙂

Rosemary

January 29, 2013

I can no other answer make but thanks, and thanks, and ever thanks…

Filed under: Adopt A Paca, alpaca, Alpaca Care, Alpacas, Blogroll, Family, General — alpacalady @ 5:10 pm

So said William Shakespeare and so say us!  For recently we received a special package in the mail for one of the alpacas in our Adopt-A-Paca program.

Our sweet yearling alpaca Pearl was recently sponsored by the Reyes family of California.  Pearl’s “adoption” was actually given to the son of the family, Oliver Reyes, by a family friend, Lan Merrill.  Lan confided in me that while young Oliver was the one receiving the gift, it was Oliver’s mother Veronica who would be the most excited.   The Reyes family had visited an alpaca farm in Ojai, California and Veronica had fallen in love with alpacas (and who can blame her!).

Pearl in the snow

Pearl

It was great fun getting to know Lan as we arranged for the sponsorship of Pearl and the delivery of the adoption packet. It was also fun hearing from Veronica once she and her family had received their gift.    They were so thrilled to learn of their newly “adopted” alpaca.  We soon received an email from Veronica saying that she would like to send Pearl a gift of some sort and I suggested that perhaps some alpaca treats would be something Pearl would enjoy.

Veronica, her husband Tim and son Oliver got busy and soon we received Pearl’s gift – just look at all those yummy treats!

Pearl's Treats

These are the treats and card that Pearl received from her Adopt-A-Paca sponsors, the Reyes Family

Along with the treats also came a card for Pearl.  Now Pearl hasn’t mastered reading yet but she did look meaningfully at me when I read her card to her, particularly when I got to the part about watching her figure.

We are now working on getting Pearl to eat the treats from our hands.  Pearl is a little shy and isn’t in the habit of eating out of our hands, but she is starting to eat the treats if we crumble them up and put them in a feed tray.  That is if she can get to them before the other alpacas!

This is just one example of the fun our alpaca sponsors are having with our Adopt-A-Paca program.  Participation is as little or as much as the sponsors wish to do.  They can just enjoy receiving their pen pal letters and other goodies from their sponsored alpaca or they can send letters or gifts to their sponsored alpaca or come and visit their sponsored alpaca.

We are thoroughly enjoying getting to know our sponsors,  the Adopt-A-Paca program is bringing us new members to our Windrush Alpacas family from near and far.  Coraline’s sponsor Betty comes to see “her girl” on most Open Farm Days, Honey’s sponsor Kiyah comes and helps us with chores some weekends (well Kiyah’s mom Mindy ends up doing most of the helping, thank you Mindy!  But Kiyah has great fun collecting farm treasure such as sticks and rocks and is treated to the occasional wheelbarrow ride by Ric), Etta’s sponsor Darlene comes by often for special kisses from Etta. Aida took the picture of her sponsored alpaca Dream to show and tell at school.  Aida’s sister Cara (who is almost 3) decided that her sponsored alpaca Kyleen really wanted to be called Adele.  We can’t let sponsors officially change our alpacas names as they are all registered with the alpaca registry but Cara doesn’t need to know that.

So a big Thank You to all of our Adopt-A-Paca sponsors, we really appreciate your involvement in our program and look forward to learning more about you and helping your sponsored alpacas keep in touch with you.

To the Reyes family – thank you so much for Pearl’s gift, she and her herd mates are most grateful and hope that even though you are many miles away you will one day be able to visit the farm.

For those who also wish to make alpaca treats either for our alpacas or theirs, here is the link to the recipe which we found on the website of Cathy Spalding of Gentle Spirit Behavior and Training for Alpacas and Llamas  http://gentlespiritllamas.com/html/tips/treats.htm

Rosemary

October 25, 2012

Adopt-A-Paca – the motivation behind the program

Aimee

I’m Aimee – Adopt Me!

We recently decided to launch a new “product” at the farm, although perhaps ‘product’ is really not a good word for it.  “Opportunity” may be a word more fitting, as we feel our Adopt-a-Paca program allows people a chance to get a closer glimpse of life with alpacas without having to go to the expense of buying and keeping them.

The Adopt-A-Paca program was Ric’s idea.  Anyone who has been to our Open Farm Days knows that Ric is the main man when it comes to doing the tours of the farm.  Ric is definitely much more of a people person than I am (nothing personal folks, but I just am more comfortable with four leggeds than two leggeds!)  and really enjoys interacting with visitors young and old.  Ric’s 30 years in the Air Force has provided him with confidence in public speaking and his degree in Elementary Education enables him to relate to the many young visitors we get to Open Farm Day.  People love Ric’s farm tours and Ric loves to give them.

So having shown many visitors around the farm, Ric realized that many people would dearly love to own alpacas but are not in a position to do so.  Not everyone lives on acreage suitable for alpacas, and our military visitors know that they are usually stationed here for a few short years and could deploy overseas or get a permanent move in the near future.  Some people know that they don’t have the time to care for alpacas along with their already busy schedules.  There are a variety of reasons why people may not be able to own alpacas, but that doesn’t mean that they may not hope to in future years and it doesn’t stop them longing to own alpacas or wanting to connect with alpacas.  Ric wanted a way to get those people a little closer to living the alpaca dream.

Being “animal mad” at a young age I can relate to those who long to own animals but who don’t get the opportunity to do so.  As a child I loved animals of all shapes and sizes and longed to have a pony or horse of my own.  The only dolls I played with were those that could sit on toy horses.

My parents did their best to cater to my desire to be around animals.  They arranged for riding lessons, drove me to stables to help friends who owned horses and drove me to kennels to volunteer.  They knew that any family vacation would involve either finding a riding stable nearby or organizing trips to visit local horses, cows or any other creature that I decided to bond with on vacation.  My brothers and I grew up with family dogs, cats, goldfish, gerbils and guinea pigs, but my parents did not feel that we could have a horse in our family.

So when Ric suggested the Adopt-a-Paca program it struck a chord with me.  Here was a way we could allow people who fall in love with our alpacas and to get a little bit closer to alpaca life.

To start with we have kept the program very basic.  For $25 people can select one of the alpacas in the Adopt-a-Paca program for a year and in exchange they receive:

  • An Adoption Certificate
  • An 8×10 picture of the selected alpaca
  • A copy of the Alpaca Registry, Inc. (ARI) registration certificate showing the alpaca’s date of birth an lineage
  • Periodic pen pal letters from the alpaca
  • Monthly e-mail newsletters from the farm
  • Maybe even get some neat bonuses during the year… you’ll just have to wait and see!

The sponsorship will last for 12 months at which time you can renew for another year or pick a new alpaca

As the program grows we may make some changes and expand it further, for now we are just “dipping our toes in the water” to gauge the amount of interest.

Of course you don’t get to take the alpaca home and ownership of the alpaca is still ours, but for the year you are in the program you will get a closer look at life with the alpacas and hopefully get to know “your” alpaca better.

What’s in it for us you might ask?  Well your $25 contribution will go toward covering the costs of daily care for your alpaca – it costs more than $25 a year to raise an alpaca, but your contribution will help offset the costs a little.  We also feel we will get to know our farm visitors and fans a bit better.  Perhaps too in these trying economic times your “adopted” alpaca will bring you something to look forward to and put a little joy in your heart as alpacas often do.

We hope you will join in with our “Adopt-A-Paca” program and that together we will have a lot of fun with it – and of course if you would prefer to actually own alpacas we also sell them too!

Rosemary

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