Llama vs. Alpaca

lee&lyric

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I just read the recommended reading by elevan. I can't remember right now why I decided upon alpacas some months ago after reading. However, now I am wondering if I need to rethink. I want to learn to spin wool into yarn, but also want our backyard fam guarded. My question then is, will alpaca guard or is that an absolute no-no?

Thanks.

Lyric
 

lee&lyric

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This "may" have answered my own question:

My cousin is in England and sent me the following link about Prince Charles using alpacas to guard his sheep.
 

Ms. Research

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You got me curious as to Llamas and Alpacas. I keep showing DH Elevan's Jerry and Peaches.

So I did some googling and found that on Australia Alpaca (www.alpaca.asn.au) they recommend alpacas.

But on Sheep 201 I found this:

A single llama should be used so that it will bond to the sheep and not other llamas.
Llamas can offer an effective, long-term, economical alternative for predator control. They are particularly aggressive towards dogs and coyotes. Llamas do not require training. Females or geldings (castrated males) are generally recommended over intact males. Females are very aggressive towards strange dogs. Intact males may try to breed the ewes and could cause injuries or death.

A single llama is usually more effective in a pasture as some llamas may bond with each other and fail to protect the flock. Llamas should be introduced to sheep in a small pasture or corral. They do not need to be raised with sheep to be effective. Human contact with a guard llama should be avoided.

There are many advantage to using llamas as livestock guardians. Their care and feeding is similar to sheep. They do not require special feeds. They are live long and are less prone to accidental death.

Alpacas are not used as guardians. They are defenseless like sheep and will flee when they are frightened. Many alpaca producers employ livestock guardians.
Though I'm more prone to lean toward a Dog, I would lean more towards a Llama for protection than alpaca. Lots of information out there on Alpacas though. Was interesting to read about. :)
 

lee&lyric

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Ms. Research said:
But on Sheep 201 I found this: Alpacas are not used as guardians. They are defenseless like sheep and will flee when they are frightened. Many alpaca producers employ livestock guardians.
Though I'm more prone to lean toward a Dog, I would lean more towards a Llama for protection than alpaca. Lots of information out there on Alpacas though. Was interesting to read about. :)
Now THIS is eye opening, Ms. Research. It looks like my fiber alpaca will need guarding themselves. Humph, that's why research is an important precursor to purchase. Thanks. :)
 

ksalvagno

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Alpacas usually won't guard. They also aren't large enough to stomp a coyote or dog. A llama is large enough. But....you have to be sure and get a guard llama. Not every llama will guard. There are some alpacas that will guard but they are much fewer than llamas.
 

Tashi

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I've got three intact males, and they've seen of our choccie labs plenty of times and the fox on one occasion. We used to have problems with foxes and our chickens but since we've had our alpacas this has stopped completely. It's actually a first for me that they can't be used as guardians!! I guess it's where you're from/what they're guarding/what they're guarding from etc.

Good luck!! (With the spinning as well!)
 

ksalvagno

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I take it the alpacas are in with the chickens? I would guess that the larger animal is intimidating to the fox and foxes are small enough that an alpaca probably could stomp it to death. I have found that the hawks and turkey vultures stay away from our chickens since our goats are out in the field with them. So I think just the larger animal out in the field with the chickens can make a big difference.
 

kuntrygirl

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I read that Alpacas may take out and run alongside of the other animals if a predator comes in the chicken yard and won't protect.
 
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I have an LGD, a Leonberger, to protect the chickens & the alpacas; but I think our alpacas could take care of themselves against our biggest predators, coyotes. They do seem to act as a group to chase our 100 pound dog out of the corral. That being said, they're certainly not regarded as a herd protector, like a llama.
 

livn4myanimals

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I've read that it can vary with individual animals.
Some Alpacas can be very good, others may not be. Personally, my two intact alpaca boys are pretty good, I've seen them chase small animals, and they certainly don't run away scared when my in-laws dogs come around. They are quite the opposite, very alert and on guard. The dogs seem to keep their distance, though. I've never seen them chase the alpacas.

Of course, maybe it has to do with the fact that I have a "guardian horse" in with the alpacas too. :lol:
 
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