Thursday, February 19, 2009

Caramello (and a new author!)

I thought I would have a go at writing for the blog this time as Perry hasn’t written for a while. I thought I would introduce you to Caramello she was the first alpaca to arrive at our property and remains our favourite.


Caramello also won us our 1st ribbon (Strathalbyn show in 2007). She has since gone on to win two 2nd places in fleece competitions. She was beaten in to second place on each occasion by Chaparral Dimple (I know some of you who read this blog know Shorty and Dee from Chaparral) who usually then goes on to win supreme fleece so Caramello has some tough completion.

On the 10th February this year, she produced her first (and long awaited cria). Caramello took a long time to become pregnant in fact it was about 14months after the first attempt that she conceived, she even managed a phantom pregnancy along the way. So you can imagine how keen we were to see the safe delivery of her baby. So at 4.10pm on the 10th she started to deliver on her side nothing was going to change her mind on her position. By 4.50pm we had a black female cria with breathing difficulties and a Caramello who still wouldn’t move. This is the smallest cria we have had so far weighting in at just 6kg. So with the vet called and a cold cria we worked on getting her warm. I gave her some colostrum hoping this would warm her up.

Caramello's first cria

Now there is something I need to explain here. It was rather cool at about 19 degrees C and many of you will say that that is not cool let alone cold but something strange happens to the weather here. The 15-16 degree C seems freezing even when family and friends have visited from the UK they comment on how cold it gets yet would probably be wearing short sleeves in the UK.

Caramello beyond sniffing her little one did not want to know and the little one did not want to move. Greg our vet arrived at 5.30pm to check both mum and baby. Both were fine and we started bottle feeding every 1.5 hours until midnight and then again at 3am and luckily by 6am little one started to feed from mum when we went to feed her. We were really pleased as Greg had said that if feeding was not happening by 9am it would have had to be plasma and we didn’t want that. Greg questioned if this was a premature cria as her teeth hadn’t erupted in fact she was 6 days late. The next few days consisted of going over to Caramello regularly to get her to stand up so little one could feed. They have at last got their act together and Caramello is beginning to look her like old self. It is easy to see her cria in the paddock, not only is she still the smallest but she has yellow tape on her ears holding them in shape. I have to say we are hopeful that she may become a show girl as her fleece at this stage looks really promising.


  1. What a beautiful pair they are :-)

    We've always had a weak spot for black alpacas. Caramellos fleece looks great.

  2. Hopefully, things will go from strength to strength, just a slow start, as long as things continue to improve, looks like she will be a 'Show Stopper'...Good luck with your new arrival...look forward to some more nice photos and reports on their progress...all the best.....Jayne

  3. I had a little boy Hughie) who I initially bottle fed last year. Within a few days he was feeding from mum and in a couple of weeks he was piling on the weight. He's now a strapping lad!

    Has your new addition got a name yet?

  4. We haven't named her yet as we can't agree on a name.
    As of yesterday she commenced on Prolacsis paste as she was producing yellow/greenish poo. The paste is a lovely shade of turquoise so we will wait and see what happens. She has only put on 400gms since birth. So we are keeping a good eye on her. She is in the maternity paddock so you might catch her on camera on our web site. She has now had the tape taken off her ears and at least they are now straight. Sarah