My name is Liz and I’m an alpaca farmer.
Oh, I started innocently enough with a few backyard chickens about 10 years ago. I didn’t know then that chickens were a gateway animal. I didn’t know that innocently dabbling in farm fowl and happily collecting eggs each morning would eventually lead me down a path to furry livestock and fiber crafts.
So how did the seduction occur? For my husband and me it was during leisurely travels around the backroads of the Northwest countryside. Lying in wait were beautiful alpacas languidly grazing on green pastures. Graceful animals in myriad colors. Aesthetics first, I guess. Because that’s nature’s way of capturing your attention before it goes in for the kill--capturing your heart. The fatal blow is made when you make eye contact with an alpaca. Do. Not. Make. Eye. Contact. Because then you’ll buy five of them and three years later you’ll be birthing babies and feeding a herd of 23 in your back yard. Or something like that which may or may not have happened to us.
So that’s how we got to be alpaca farmers on Four Acres in southern Delaware. Ok, so it’s not a sad story but it is a true one. I just needed to get your attention. The fact is, alpacas are endlessly fascinating. They have a wide range of personalities, outsmart me on a regular basis, and exhibit joy, love (yes, seriously) and a sense of humor (usually at my expense).
But that’s enough about me. The stars of the story are the animals we’ve fallen in love with. And I’ll be writing more about them, their traits, their habits, what their fiber offers the world and most likely our foibles in taking care of them and running our business.