I think we were the first to post in a UK blog about the arrival of a cria this year. We had the early arrival of Una on the 16th of April and the whole bath, hairdryer, bed, electric blanket, duvet business. After all that it turned out that Victoria (Una's mum) had very poor milk. Una still suckles from her on and off and as previously reported Una herself has become an artful milk thief. However, she is dependent on us for the bulk of her feeding and takes between 700 and 1200ml of goats milk from us every day.
Here she is this morning draining her elevenses!
Anyway the reason we have had so many 'early' cria is that we were very organised last year, far too organised! As a result we had a lot of cria early then several who took more than one mating spread out until our last one is due in early September. In other words we have a 5 month birthing season which equals no summer holidays and me working virtually permanent evening shifts = not enough sleep = grumpy git!
So this year we are again very organised but in a different way. We are aiming to at least half the birthing season. The Qjori matings that have worked well this year are being repeated but not in dribs and drabs, no, we have held back and then unleashed Qjori on them in a short burst. Nine ladies in 4 days to be precise and oh he has been having a good time! There will be another short burst of Qjori activity later in the month.
The power of the macho is quite simply awe inspiring. These obstreporous, cantankerous, awkward, spitty females go all gooey eyed when he starts orgling and are putty in anybodies hands as long as he keeps singing his song. Poppy, one of the hair trigger spit monster family stood next to him waiting her turn last week and whilst she waited I gave her a cuddle and an injection, without so much as her blinking an eye. As far as she was concerned I simply didn't exist as Qjori's orgling did it's funky stuff and transported her to some sort of alpaca heaven. Once it's all over they wander off as if coming round from a srong sedative. Amazing, truly amazing.
So to other news, we have a second wave of females hoving into the birthing window. Here is Sahara (a Columbus daughter) and her mother Dilly, both with 'Qjori's on board.
Before they are due we have some big guns, Amelie, the mother of the famous Tsar, is due this month. We are hoping that she can recreate Tsar but in female form this year.
And of course, due any day now and pictured below, is the one and only Lily. I have the day off tomorrow and we will be alone together. She gave me the wink this morning. We will see.
Fabiola's girl is seemingly thriving and has put on 1.6kg in her first six days, so not much wrong with her, on top of that she is gorgeous!
Here is my favourite mum and baby partnership so far, Sabrina and Willow, both incredibly lovely. Willow we are pretty sure, is a very dark brown having initially thought she may be black. The new fleece at the skin seems to be coming through brown, which is splendid news!
Sabrina's mother, Bobby, is below with Ulani who we think is black, she is lovely and is growing like the clappers.
Here is Alice, surrounded by colour in the dust bowl at the top of the hill where they go when they need to catch some breeze.
And finally, just for Sue's Aunty Mary who celebrates her birthday this month and I know is a keen follower of this blog, a picture of the lovely Verity. I understand she is her favourite!