Thursday, June 30, 2011

New Cria at Misty Haven

The waiting is over.  There were two pregnant alpacas at Misty Haven this spring and now there are two cria on the ground.  These first time moms, Alicia and Makushla, have been sold to new alpaca owners.  The alpacas will stay here until the cria are old enough to move. 

I've had plenty of false warnings to get my heart-racing.  Tail held high, then nothing...bagged up with milk, then nothing...swollen nether regions, then nothing.  When I checked Thursday and Friday morning, there was no sign of anything happening.  Friday, Makushla was a bit separated from the herd and laying down, but she didn't look uncomfortable. 

Friday, I was picking up my new-to-me car at the dealers at 1:00pm.  The sales guy said it would take 20 minutes.  Two hours later, I'm back on the highway heading home.  I wasn't really worried.  After about 30 births on this farm, I figured I knew when it wasn't the day.

Guess what was in the field when I got home?  It had just happened as the cria was still trying to get steady on her legs.  The rest of the female herd hadn't even noticed they had a new one in the group.

This is a picture of her and her mom, Makushla, on Sunday, less than 48 hours old.

She's a lovely colour, a very dark reddish brown with a very unique white nose with brown freckles.

Saturday, I had a booth at the Farmer's Market.  Hubby was home keeping an eye on things.  I got home at about 1:20pm from the market.  Hubby said that I just missed another birth by ten minutes.

After 3 weeks of careful monitoring and postponing any unnecessary appointments, I ended up missing both events!

Alicia had just had her little white female cria.  She was on the tiny side at 14.6 lbs, but hit the ground running.  No interest in finding the teats right away, she just ran around the field with her poor mom humming and clucking behind her.  We were worried she wouldn't figure out who her mom was when she decided to settle down.  But she did.

We've had plenty of rain here over the past weeks, so the piece of yard between the barn and the pasture was a run of deep clay mud.  Not great for a little cria.  We usually let the mother alpaca keep her baby whereever she chooses to take her.  The pasture is safer for the cria - no dark corners to get lost in, less likely to get stepped, less germs in the grass than on a barn floor, etc. 

But when it really started raining on Friday evening, I carried her through the muck into the barn with Alicia right beside me.  I put her in the barn and boom - she flew right out the door.  I tried this 3 times.  The last time she flew (and I say flew, she was airborne), Alicia and I were slower to follow.  By the time I got out, Alicia was running around in a panic and no baby was in sight.  I noticed the boys on the other fence line were freaking out about something.  When I walked over, I found the cria stuck between a shelter and a fence.  They don't have the skill to back up at that age and I couldn't fit into that space to get her.  A scary couple of moments but hubby and I were able to pass our hands through the fence to relay her up to the top and over.

The next time she flew out of the barn, I left her and went back the house.  I saw her get stuck behind the barn door.  Again, Alicia was running around in a panic and the cria was not able to back up.  Eventually, she got out on her own.

Just after dark, I went out to check and there she was, curled up beside her mom in the barn, safe but covered in muck from her outdoor adventures.  I kept checking every few hours through the night.  She got more sleep than I did.

Here is a picture of her with the herd Sunday morning at less than 24 hours old.  Can't you just tell she's planning her next adventure?

I know she'll grow up to be a beautiful white alpaca with fine fibre and great conformation to produce good offspring and oodles of white yarn...and my apologies to her new owners who I know read this blog and who some of you may recognize...but....I just HAVE to say this...

"Size matters not, ... Look at me. Judge me by size, do you?” (Yoda from Star Wars)

"May the Force be with you!"


Mona said...

The crias are adorable! Congratulations on 2 easy births. Sounds like you have your hands full with the little white one. I love the darker colors with the white markings on their face, always so unique looking.

Wooly Knits n Bits said...

LOL! With that perfect Yoda look, she is a force to reckoned with.
I love how you describe her adventures. I would have been a mess of anxiety to watch her get into those tight corners! With the superpowers she has, she might make a great Princess Leia Organa!

Azure Islands Designs said...

LOL...what a great description of "Yoda's" escapades!!!

Both are so the fun begins! Hopefully you can relax a bit... :~)


luckybunny said...

Absolutely adorable and so exciting! Gosh, I'm overwhelmed with the excitement and cuteness :)