Alpaca Shearing: their day at the spa

Yesterday was quite an interesting day. A day I was looking forward to, because it was our first shearing experience with the Alpacas.  I could write a lot about this but think I’ll let the pictures do the story with maybe a blip here or there because I have trouble keeping my mouth shut. Oh right, like you didn’t know that!

We are getting ready. Joe Moore, our shearer, is setting up his work space and Robin and Tango are standing there looking all spiffy in their colorful halters.

The blanket area (torso) is done first and it sort of rolls off in a, well, blanket. This is the prime fleece so I rolled this in paper to keep it from getting all wadded as it would have if stuffed in a bag.

After the prime blanket area is rolled and labeled, the second cut is done. Second cuts are the neck and thigh areas. These clippings are stuffed in a bag.

Third cuts are the lower legs and face. These are gathered and placed in another bag. Third cuts are the most course of the fiber and good to use for rugs and more durable use products.

The annual CDT vaccine is given. They tried to teach me how to do it but I handed the needle back and said “I’m not ready!”

“hellooooo…um, why do I have to be last? This is so unfair.”

Annabel is done but decided to hang out a while. I think she was feeling good and relaxed. And what is going on with my legs? Very classy squat, Deb. Very classy.

I feel so….naked.

I loved Joe and his assistant, Austin. They were so fun to work with and were patient with us as we asked a million questions. We are still learning what we need to know in Alpaca husbandry and they were so awesome!

Now that this is done I need to figure out what to do with all this fiber. I will probably send it off to be made into yarn, sell it, and try out some felting and knitting. I can’t wait to learn.