Grass and hay, and small amounts of concentrate alpaca feed.
Can they live out all year?
Yes, alpacas are hardy and can withstand cold temperatures.
Do they need shelter?
Alpacas should have somewhere they can shelter from wind or hot sun, field shelters are ideal as they can be used in case of illness or doing routine tasks, but a thick hedge or tree cover can suffice.
What husbandry do they require?
Routine tasks include twice yearly worming and vaccinations against clostridial diseases. Vitamin supplements are given through the winter. Toe nails need trimming two or three times a year and teeth checked, often done during shearing in the spring.
How often do they have babies?
Females have babies once a year, called cria. Their gestation period is 11 months.
Do they kick or bite?
Alpacas do not bite as they only have bottom teeth at the front. They can kick out behind if startled, but they have soft padded feet so it is painless.
What sort of fencing do they need?
Alpacas do not challenge fences in the way of other larger livestock so fencing similar to sheep fencing is sufficient. However young crias are very inquisitive and will find any weakness or gaps to climb through. All fencing should be as badger proof as possible as TB can be fatal in alpacas.
How many animal per acre?
Grazing ratios are recommended at 5-7 animals per acre.
Can they graze with other animals?
Alpacas happily graze with sheep and horses
How do they travel?
Alpacas happily travel in livestock trailers, they should have adequate ventilation and bedding as they tend to travel sitting down.
What can you do with the fleece?
So much! sold as raw fibre or processed into yarn to make wonderful clothes. Felted for toys or soft furnishngs and alpaca fibre is fantastic in duvets and pillows.