Friday, June 27, 2008

were delivered to the Melbourne zoo on 26/6/08, where they will start their 30 day quarantine period, before entering the public arena at the Melbourne Zoo.
The area designed for the alpacas is within 100 mts of the main gate, just off to the right, where a parkland area, with beautiful shade trees will be redesigned, landscaped, and fenced to hold the alpaca display.
Whilst renovations take place, as they are also re designing new areas around the Alpaca Enclosure, THe guys will be near the taparie enclosure.
The Taparie is blind, and mainly comes out at night.
So whilst the Taparie .
The taparie is like a half horse and half elephant, so i am told, about the size of a full grown alpaca, and is not at all agressive, but a gentle animal.
It was an honor to supply the Melbourne Zoo with the alpacas, as we are told this is the very first time that the Zoo has purchased any animal from a private breeder.
The Zoos usually buy from other Zoos.
We came equipped when we delivered the alpacas, and there was a very warm welcoming committee, when the alpacas arrived.
They were weighed, and placed in their tempory quarantine area.
Whilst there, the handlers, and trainers will
be getting to now them.
The idea of the alpacas, is to train the alpacas
so they will be taken for walks through the zoo,
during opening hours, so that the public can
interact with them, Of course with trained handlers.
The Zoo would like to educate people about the alpacas and how they are farmed in their homeland, and how they are farmed here in Australia.
After delivering the alpacas, both Elyse and i were given a tour of our next most favourite animal, the elephants., going past a new exhibit, tiger pups, (georgeous).
We both went away saying to each other what a wonderful life our alpacas will have.
We met the Trainer, who is from California, and is one the world's best animal trainer.
We watch him with the elephant, and watching the elephant have his daily bath.
You can see the repore he has with the animals, and we knew that they would be in great hands, and cannot wait to see our guys when they come out of the quarantine. when you visit Melbourne Zoo next, say hello to Xocoloti (the Drink Hot chocolate dates back to the Aztecs, and they called the drink Xocoloti), Great Expectations (we were in the Uk when He was born, we were sitting at stop lights, opposite a magnificant very old building, a restaruant called "Great Expectations), Scandolous, ( he was just so cheeky looking), and Tsunami, (in memory of the tsunami victims)....say hello for us

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

vip going well

Ekyse is home from her break, and 7am, in the morning we are the front of her little flatette which is on the property, beeping the horn.

We had a huge day on.

Checking the alpacas, first thing, letting ones in sheds out, and making sure they are all wam.

Rob and Elyse go down and let the quarantine alpacas out and clean and disinfect the area.

All alpacas are going well.

Raelene Moves the girls to a new paddock, where there is alots of freash grass, this paddock has been rested since March.

We have approx 400 plus alpacas on 100 acres, but they really do not eat a great deal.

2/3rds of the farm rarely get used, and is mainly used for growing hay.

At the moment we have about 100 round bales left for sale. They are going very quick, as really this state has been in drought for about 8 years now.

We are lucky although we are not cutting as much hay as we used to, we are still getting good quality hay, and enough to feed the herd, and sell some off.

Elyse is on the tractor here.

She is really versitile.

Well off Rob and Elyse went to do another clean up, as people have moved out of their house, and then a huge clean up in the garden, for a massive mansion in Harkaway.

He said the grass was almost as tall as himself.

Elyse is still celebrating her 21st

what spoilt girl elyse is, her birthday was the 2nd of June, and this weekend her boyfriend, Nick and Elyse flew to

SA, stayed in a 5 star motel, and just had a ball of a weekend, catching a tram to Glenelg, walking through the shops, playing the pokies, having realaxin lunches, and just having a cool time.

I think all the celebrations are over now.

Freezing cold day

What a day Monday turned out to be.

Big clean for the quarantine, everything

gets that extra special check out.

All the alpacas are going well, and as you can see they are fed their food on a table, and there is plenty of room for everyone to choose from.

They are all wearing coats, although up to today, it has been quite nice weather.

The alpacas are shorn before they enter the quarantine, to meet the requirements of New Zealand.

This is so the ectoparasites can be checked and topically treated properly.

The alpacas do not really mind, In this group, there were 10 Suri's, with at least 18 mths - 2 yrs grouth on them, and actually they were glad to get their coat off.

They do not shear the suris as often as the Huacayas, that is especially if they are show animals, as they have like a longer coat, that is like a curtain, that flows as they move, and drapes down their legs.

They are a beautiful looking alpaca.

Everything was fine. The Quarantine shedding it self faces east giving full protection from any south, north and westerly winds. we mainly get the westerly winds, sometimes some notherlies, but mainly westerly.

It is actually quite wamr in the shedding and as this is winter, we mainly feed them inside, on the sunny days we give some offerings outisde as well, but most of the feed is inside the large fully equipped, purpose built shedding.

We checked all the herd, as they are in about 6 paddocks at the moment, although the bulk of the herd is in one paddock.

We have just weaned 50 weanlings only 2 weeks ago, and although we make sure there is a couple of mature alpacas to look after the weanlings, we keep a constant watch on these precious girls and boys.

I bought most of the large group up to the yards to take some photos, the yards are really protected, and then beside the yards, there is a paddock, sometimes just to hold them in for a couple of hours if we are doing some procedures.

I was taking photos, of the alpacas, and rang out of batteries, this was about 1.15pm, and then whilst i was down the street grabbed something for tea.

Back about 2.30, and in between time the wind was just coming up that hill. I decided to move the alpacas, but 5 of them did not want to budge.

and the others were getting spooked as the wind was really getting stronger and almost like a gale, it was quite cold.

These girls are getting hyperthermia i thought, as the others were not going out the gate.

lucky my son Andrew, came home, and came and gave me a hand, and we took the 5 girls into the shed, whilst Daniel and Lauren moved the rest of the alpacas to a protected paddock.

The girls were cold, and one was very cold.

we had just weaned her cria, so we took her straight up to the vet.

Within about 1.5 hours, you would not have thought there had been anything wrong, as she was standing up in the surgery waiting for her lift home.

Whilst i took Elana up to the vets, Andrew was helping the others and checking to make sure no one else was cold.

It was really raining quite heavy at this stage.

The first thought also was the quarantine girls.

Lauren went down to check on them, and they had all gone inside, all sitting in a row, just watching the rain on the outside, They were no worries, but we put out extra feed, the best way to keep them warm is to make sure there is plenty of feed.

By 8pm, all were right, we placed most of the weanlings in sheds, the girls that were feeling the cold, (they all had a minimum of abou 3 inches of fleece on), the males were in protected paddocks.

The females were also placed in the paddock closest to the house, where we can view them all from our bedroom and ensuite windows, (as we live in a two story house), we can check them all night long.

Next morning, a glorious sunny day.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Alpaca Farm Duties

There is a lot to do on an alpaca farm, we have over 400 alpacas on our farm, and winter is close by.

At the moment we are weaning babies off their mums, this happens when they are roughly 5 months old.

Some of the mums really put into the crias, and the crias are blooming, grown well, heaps of fleece, and very rounded.

These crias have drained a lot of goodness off the dams, as the dams have out all their energies into providing a great milk source for their offspring.

We need to seive through the herd, and identify these dams, so they can be put into a paddock with less competition, so they can put the weight on, so they are less affected if we get super cold weather.

With over 100 babies born so far, this job does take a few days to do, as the dams are weighed, innoculated with 5 in 1, wormed, etc.

Crias also identified, and body scored, also wormed, and given 5 in 1.

It is a very stressful time for these crias and dams, and the dams do not like to have their babies taken from them.

Babies cry for a few days, but it is easier to wean in large groups, as they do comfort each other.

We also assess the fleece qualities, and work out which ones we will show this year.

It is very hard, because there is so many we want to show.

But we have a van to transport them to the shows, and you only have a limit to how many you can take, and have time to halter train.
Babies are now all weaned, and dams are in a rested paddock, so they can put on weight very quickly. the end of another day, doing farm duties
Raelene still have many hours left tonight completing the book work.

VIP Landscaping

Well early start today, we have a big day, quarantine procedures, then Elyse and Rob have a huge landscaping job which will take about 5 afternoons, laying turf.
This is before they started, this is after they finished.

Iy is all hard labour,

sweat, and they are mighty sore when they come home.

but they love to see a great results as you will see for the following photos. If anyone wants some mowing, landscaping, laying turf, clean ups, his phone no is 0407239691

farm duties

Every day we start off feeding the alpacas in quarantine. Raelene goes bak to completing the bookwork, and Rob and Elyse clean and disinfect the quarantine, this will take at least to lunch time.

Rob's new career at landscaping is proving quite good.

ALthough he really has been doing this part time over the past 6 months, combined with his courier work, he decided last Friday, enough is enough with the courier, and he has offically left API now, which he was there for 13 years. Elyse helps him as well as farm duties.
The franchise is VIP Home Services, and his areas, are Pakenham, Nar Nar Goon,
Drouin, Cora Lyn, Lang Lang, Endeavour Hills, & Hallam.

As you can see she is very fersitile, and her day is very busy.

new Quarantine starts

The next group of alpacas have entered quarantine. Some of these alpacas are national champions for Australia, many Suri's in this group.

ALthough it is officially winter, it has been so far very mild.

We have had some rain, but it is not too cold.

We start with the first procedures, and health check.
All alpacas are looking really good.
Although they have just been shorn, we place coats on them to make sure they stay wam.
A nice bunch, and all are getting on well.

Elyse's 21st

Oh What a night.

ELyse is now 21, and we celebrated her 21st at home, with some close friends and family.

She had a wild time, for us anyway, she looked beautiful, and had a fabulous night.

She has received some gorgeous presents and thanks everyone who turned up, and also for the presents she has received.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


THE ALPACAS ENTERED QUARANTINE, next group, the majority of this group will end up in Holland, and UK.

SOme of Australian Champion Suri's have entered, and some results of ET breeding programs are also in this group.

Shearing yesterday just before they entered, shedded for the night because the weather was breaking, resulting in a large storm last night.

All were bright as a button this morning.

1st salmonella samples were taken, and first lot of procedures today.

Elyse was selecting our show team, it is pretty hard to pick, as the list consists of at least 20 quality alpacas, but we only have a couple of weeks for halter training. Pink FLamingo one of the show team

we decided 6 were to go.

They are pretty hard to pick.

We have some elite males growing out in the front paddock, we checked their fleece out as well. and wow, we would like to take more.

Must go now.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Alpacas arrive in Auckland

Quarantine no NZ23 is now finished, with the alpacas have arrived safely in New Zealand.
Final vet inspections on Friday morning. AQIS Inspections were very happy with the alpacas whilst in Quarantine.
All alpacas have put on weight in quarantine. The plane was on time, as we loaded the alpacas on board.
The quarantine facility is then cleaned and disinfected, as it is prepared for start on NZ24 on Tuesday 10/6/08.
Long weekend this weekend, for Queen's birthday.
We get home from the airport around 3am, a few hours sleep, then we have put all our attention for ELyse's 21st party.
Elyse and Leesa came to the supermarket to help pick up all the food needed, and they went off to buy a most beautiful outfit for Elyse to wear on her 21dt.
She looked absolutely beautiful.
Rob and I were so proud our our Baby!!.
The last of 4 has now turned 21.
Rob's sister, Maureen stayed over, as she had just finished work.
We decided to visit ROb's father and step mother, as they could not come to the party, as Molly had been sick all week.
It turns out Molly (90), has a broken rib, from the gastro she had all week.
Poor Molly looked so crook.
Rob's dad, Bill, (82), was just so worried about her, we went down to get some jellies, and yoghart for her to get her some energy, as she and Rob's dad, had not aten a great deal over the past couple of days.
We also took all the remaining food left over from the party, which hopefully will tie them over for a couple of days.
Maureen and i stayed up talking most of the night, whilst ROb caught up on some sleep.
Today, we had an easy day.
We made sure Molly was coping Ok, when we got the word, that all was Ok, i caught up on some computer work and Rob painted a car he purchased off ebay.
See you for now.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Last days of quarantine

Tomorrow is a hectic day, all the alpacas will be vet checked and the last prosecures will be completed.
The crate has been delivered to the airport, and all the paperwork has been completed.
AQIS Inspector will also check the alpacas, and give permission to load.
A check to see if the airplane is going to be on time or not.
Sometimes the plane is delayed, and so the alpacas are not loaded until we know a confirmed Time of arrival.
Vehicles are cleaned and disinfected.
large clean up is under progress also in the quarantine facility. After checking everything through today, just before dusk i took a walk to check all the alpacas.
As it has been a dry year this year, we have the main herd, (all the girls, babies, except for the late pregnant females, some weanlings i like to keep an eye on), stud males are in a protected paddock, and the other males are in good paddocks down the back.
We have been waiting for the winter to really set in, which going by the weather forecast that will not be long. So we are resting most of the paddocks, the above paddock they only went in yesterday, plenty of feed.
The picture above is of the girls paddock, as the sun was going down, looking over the main herd paddock. Rose is in the fore ground, she is here to get pregnant, she has had a few problems, so it was decided she stay here, and treat her, and confirm pregnancy by ultrasound before she leaves.

A new arrival Pasha, is settling in well.
She is sired by AValanche, and we will mate her to Vallon De Oro'
Elyse turned 21 on the 2nc June, and we are holding her 21st Birthday party on Saturday, mainly family a few of ELyse's close friends, just a small affair.
As i walked through the paddocks, tonight, i was very proud of the quality of offspring we are producing.
Vallon De Oro' , is definately taking over from Stefano.