Alpacas are a species of South American camelids that are domesticated in homes and other settings. Most breeders keep them in herds and they thrive at altitudes of 3500-5000 meters above the sea level. They are common in Ecuador, northern Bolivia, southern Peru, and northern Chile. According to the oldest record regarding these creatures, they were first discovered over a millennium ago. Owning many of them was a sign of wealth in Inca. To learn more about alpacas Nashville is the best place to visit.
The invasion of Inca Empire by the Spanish forced the inhabitants to move to the heights of the Andes to seek refuge. They took with them some of their animals, making them avoid extinction. The global alpaca population is very high, reaching 3.5 million currently. Regardless of the rich history the animal has, it is still not known in many part of the world. Its introduction into the US only occurred in 1983.
However, the animals continue to receive a lot of attention from the international community, with thousands of them being shipped to many major country. An alpaca is very close in appearance to a small llama. Breeders who bred the alpaca did so for the purpose of benefiting from its fine fiber. As such, they were not and are not currently used a beasts of burden, especially given that they are relatively small in size.
The face of an alpaca resembles that of a camel and the have shaggy necks. As opposed to camels, they do not have humps. Their noses are pronounced, lips are thick, and ears are very long. The eyes are big and very curious. Those that are domesticated well are gentle and friendly.
The terms fleece of fiber are used to refer to hair obtained from alpaca and not wool or fur. The animal comes in many different colors, with records showing more than 22 different natural colors. The colors range from rose gray, white, black, and silver to light fawn, mahogany brown, and champagne. They can also be bred for particular colors. Alpacas can be placed into two separate types, suri and huacaya. The fiber type forms the basis for the classification.
The huacaya type has wooly, crimped, dense, and water-resistant fleece. In North America, more than 90 percent of all the animals are huacayas. On the other hand, the suri alpaca has fine and lustrous that grows parallel to the body. The fiber forms long separate locks. This types makes less than ten percent of the population in the United States.
In mid-1980s, hundreds of these animals were imported from Peru into the United States and are now a premier livestock. The national Alpaca Registry, abbreviated as ARI was formed to preserve purity and high standards in the animal. At the moment, importation from South America is closed. The US is devoted to raising the standards to the highest level in the world and every alpaca born in the country is blood-typed.
Fiber from alpaca is used for many different uses. Like wool, it is used for making knitted and woven items. Scarves, gloves, sweaters, socks, coats, hats, blankets, and bedding are some among the items it is used to make.
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