Shangrila Llamas

Answers to Llama Questions?

What do you do with a Llama?  Llamas are raised for packing, wool production, cart pulling, animal facilitated therapy, companion animals, exhibition in shows, parades and fairs and guardians of sheep and goats.  Their manure makes wonderful odorless fertilizer. 

What do they eat? Llamas are a modified ruminant with a three-compartment stomach.  Like cattle and sheep, they chew their cud.  Because of a relatively low protein requirement and an efficient digestive system, they can be kept on a variety of suitable pastures or hay, with the supplementation of recommended vitamins, minerals and salt.  A llama costs significantly less to feed than other comparable-sized animals. (Maybe even your dog or cat!)

What kind of shelter do they require?  Their needs are minimal.  Any kind of barn will do.  Many llamas are housed in just three-sided shelters.  They need a place to get out of the wind, rain and snow.  They do better in the cold than the heat.  In the heat of summer, they do need shade and possibly access to fans.

What kind of fencing do they need? Llamas are very easy on fencing.  Almost any kind will do, including board, woven wire, chain link or New Zealand wire.

How do you transport them? Llamas will travel in any vehicle into which they can fit; cars, vans, carriers on pickups, airplanes and stock or horse trailers.

Are they intelligent?  Yes! Which is why they are so easily trained to accept a halter, to follow on a lead, to load in and out of a vehicle and to carry a pack.  They can even be trained to jump through hoops on command.

Are they good pack animals?  Sure-footed and agile, most llamas are excellent packers and can carry an average of 80 pounds or 25% of their body weight for 10 to 15 miles per day. Their padded foot makes a low environmental impact.

What is their personality like?  Because llamas are highly sociable herd animals, they need the companionship of other llamas or other livestock like sheep or goats (who they will bond to and protect).  Llamas are gentle and curious.  They can be very affectionate and enjoy being petted if this is how they've been raised.  Their personality is very much like a cat.  Each llama has it's own very distinct likes and dislikes.

Do they spit?  Llamas will spit at other llamas in order to establish the pecking order within the group, to ward off an unwanted suitor, or to say "Stop it!" A llama who has been mishandled, feels abused, or threatened may occasionally spit at humans.

What colors do they come in?  A llama may be solid, spotted, or marked in a wide variety of patterns, with wool colors ranging from white to black including many shades of gray, red, beige and black.

What do you have to do to keep them healthy? They are relatively hardy, healthy, easy to care for and remarkably disease-free.  They do require yearly vaccinations and routine de-worming and toenail trimming to stay this way.

When can you breed them? Females are first bred at 18-24 months of age.  Llamas are induced ovulators and breed any time of the year.

What do the babies weigh when they are born?  Normal birth weight is 15-35 pounds.

When should you wean a baby? They are weaned at about 6 months of age either by us or the mother often starts the weaning process before us.

What is the life span of a llama?  20-25 years

How much do llamas weigh?  Adult-250 to 450 pounds

How tall do they get? 36" to 47" at the shoulder, 5' to 6'5" at the head

What kinds of sounds do they make? Llamas hum to their babies.  They also have a high pitched scream which is an alarm cry.  The male makes a sound called orgling when he is in the processes of breeding.


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Shangrila's Herd Sires:  BAL Haggerty - BAL Whisk Me Away - Power Spike - Boogie Knight

Shangrila's Reference Herd Sires:  Paso Peru - Smokin' Joe - Fancy Creek Hobbes - Cuervo Supreme - Movin On- BAL Whizard
Argentine Altanero - BAL Presidio

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