1. Saturday, was a difficult day. Alpacas have a pretty fine fiber, which makes the yarn very lovely, but more difficult to shear. I emailed with my shearing mentor overnight about the issues I was having. I had not been starting with enough tension on the combs and cutters. As a result of his coaching, Sunday was a much better and more efficient day of shearing.
2. While we have been practicing walking on halters with the alpacas, most of them were not interested in going into the hay barn where the shearing was set up. There were a couple of surface changes... grass to concrete to rubber mat. It appeared very dark in the barn from outside. So, over the next year, we will practice walking into the hay barn with each of the alpacas.
3. Keyla, my teacher, strikes again. She was the only alpaca who got stressed out during the shearing process. A couple of the other alpacas were vocal, but Keyla screamed, spat, drooled, peed, pooped and prolapsed during the process. We only had her down for a few minutes. I was able to shear off her blanket, but nothing else. So she nearly got a llama cut this year. I will call our vet to see if there's something we can do to help her be more relaxed. She is ok, but saved a special spit just for me. She wanted to make sure I knew she wasn't happy about being sheared.
My next project is to build a skirting table so I can begin to process our harvest.
My husband and I returned to Colorado in 2009 to live a simpler life.
Right now the goal of simple means we are busy. Busy fixing up our farm, raising Alpacas and Tibetan Mastiffs, racing wheelchairs, testing software and building Alpacamundo.
This blog is about these and the other things going on in my head. I hope you find it interesting, useful and inspiring.