MIDWEST ALPACA OWNERS 
AND BREEDERS ASSOCIATION



About the Alpaca Industry

Learn More

The Alpaca Owners Association offers a wealth of information for new owners and those who are thinking about alpaca ownership. Check out the info pages here, from the basics about the animals to husbandry and having alpacas as a business.

Other excellent resources include:

Alpacas!

  • Alpacas are the perfect small livestock.
  • Alpacas don’t require a lot of land – you can stock 5-8 per acre depending upon quality of pasture.
  • Alpacas are easy on the earth. With soft padded feet, they don’t tear up the earth.
  • Alpacas love to graze, biting grass off rather than pulling it out of the ground. You don’t have to re-seed as often.
  • Alpacas are clean animals. They defecate in common manure piles, making daily clean-up easier.
  • Alpaca “poop” is a perfect soil nutrient, and can be used immediately without needing to compost.
  • Alpacas grow to be around 150 pounds at adulthood, making care easier than with some larger livestock.
  • Alpacas are quiet (they hummmm!) and intelligent. They learn quickly and appreciate routine.
  • Alpacas do spit, but usually not unless they feel threatened. Sometimes they spit at each other if they are arguing over food. We try not to get in the way.

Thinking about alpacas?

  • Alpacas are herd animals. They need friends of their own kind in order to stay healthy and thrive. Most people recommend 4-5 alpacas.
  • Always keep males and females in separate pastures, even if you geld the males.
  • Alpacas need fresh water and good quality hay/pasture. Most alpaca owners also feed a small amount of specially formulated alpaca supplement daily.
  • Alpacas have no way to defend themselves. No-climb fencing will help keep predators out of the pastures and keep your alpacas safe. Many alpaca owners also have llamas or livestock guard dogs to help protect their alpacas.
  • It takes time to gain the trust of alpacas. Take your time and let them get used to you. Sit with them and read a book. Eventually they will allow you to be closer to them.
  • Alpacas need to be sheared every year in the spring. This is for their health and well-being. Also, you can sell the fiber or use it yourself to make products.

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