Sunday marked the end of our 2014 birthing season with the delivery Lily's cria. This delivery was wrought with anticipation, so the successful delivery is a relief - and the fact that it's a lovely little girl is cause for celebration!
We had not intended to breed Lily as she has proven to be a difficult mother. Lily has consistently delivered her crias prematurely. They have all survived, but it has always been a lot of hard work and aggravation for the first few days getting the baby strong and getting Lily to allow it to nurse. After the first couple of days all is well and Lily ends up bonding with her baby and being a good mom, but those first few days have been a real challenge.
The first time she delivered early, we attributed it to being a first time mom. The second time it happened, we attributed it to shearing day stress (both of her first two deliveries occurred just 3 days after shearing each year). So on the 3rd breeding, we left Lily out of the shearing day line-up so as not to stress her into early delivery. That helped - and she carried the baby about 10 days longer than she had the first 2 years - but she still delivered early. We could no longer accept excuses. Lily was to be out of the breeding program.
So... how did she end up pregnant? Good question!
Last year, we had a very nice herdsire named Triumph here to breed to our Caelia (Lily's mom). We bred Triumph to Caelia several times, but for some reason Caelia never got pregnant. However, during the time that Triumph was here, we had a 'gate incident'. One of our gates was not latched properly and 3 girls got into the paddock with Triumph. Ughhhhh.... Of course Lily (the only girl we didn't want to get pregnant) was one of the 3 girls that got in, and the only one of the 3 to get pregnant!
Triumph went home and Caelia never did get pregnant. And then this spring, we had to make the very difficult decision to have Caelia put down. Caelia had developed an abnormal growth that was affecting her ability to urinate (any possibly her ability to concieve?). It had probably been there for some time, but we never saw symptoms until it had grown large enough to affect her in a very serious way.
So the breeding we wanted for Caelia never came to fruition but was 'received' by her daughter, Lily. In all these years, this is the only unplanned pregnancy we have ever had. Maybe things happen for a reason? Call it destiny?
We think so! With thoughts of Caelia and remembering that this breeding was intended for her, we are proud to present Destiny of Pronkin' Pastures!
We are thrilled to report that Lily carried this baby full-term, and delivered a very robust 21.4 pound girl!
And unlike what has happened with the premature deliveries, Lily is proving herself to he a nurturing and attentive mom right away!
With the successful delivery of Destiny, Lily has earned her spot back in our breeding program. We are thrilled to have her 'back'!
I have held off on telling you the details of our most recent birth so we could conduct our little guessing game, but the time has come to fill you in! No one guessed the correct mom/baby combo, but I can tell you that Pronkin' Pastures definitely feels like a winner with this cria!
First... It's a GIRL! After getting 4 boys and just one girl this summer, we are thrilled to be working toward balancing out the boy/girl ratio a little bit.
Second.... Mom is Lilah! We love Lilah and are thrilled to have her female offspring in our herd. We can't say enough about Lilah - she is a color champion and at 10 years of age continues to produce a lovely fleece. She a terrific mom that delivers quality offspring. Lilah has been a member of our herd for a few years, but for a number of unanticipated reasons (none Lilah's fault), has not been successfully bred on our farm until last year, so we only have one cria by her (she came to us pregnant), and it is a boy.
The birth of an alpaca baby is just amazing and I was able to capture some good photos, so I wanted to share - but, since not everyone is comfortable seeing all the details, I have hidden the photos. If you would like to see the actual delivery, click the links... If not, just skip on past the links below and see our beautiful new addition!
We are proud to present 'Leilani of Pronkin' Pastures'! (pronounced lay-LAH-nee)
News of the new arrival spread quickly, and Leilani and Lilah had visitors first thing the next morning. Our visitors enjoyed an up-close and personal experience. We thank them for sharing the following photos of their visit!
Visitors that have been here before can attest to Lilah's interest in meeting guests. It looks like Leilani may follow in her footsteps! We invite you to stop by and see her!
About the author:
Always an animal lover, alpacas entered my life in 2005.
I enjoy all aspects of life with alpacas - from caring for them, to training them, spinning and knitting their wonderful fiber, photographing them, and even writing about them!