Saturday, 18 July 2009

Girls on tour to the Netherlands...

Glamourgirls from England

Here are the pictures of two ladies which come over to the Netherlands .... We bought three animals (not seen) on the Internet. It is something we never do!!! We always want to check them before buying. But we were lucky; two of them have nice fleeces (micron - 18 both at 11 months of age). And the other had a fleecesample (same age) of 16 micron....! Very beautiful small crimp. Density and brightness could be better. But this something to improve in the next generation.

We have several options for very beautiful animals. But first we have to think what our breeding goals will be and how much money we want to spend .... And of course don't forget our ROI (Return On Investment). We have to do some serious marketing. In the Netherlands nobody knows who we are.... ha, ha....

Have a very nice weekend, Leo

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Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Looking for alpacas

At sunday late in the afternoon we (Marieke and I) left to visit some farms in England. We decided to take a new route (new for us). Go by Belgium and France and take the ferry to the UK.

First night we slept in Maidstone at the Black horse Inn. Really a nice little hotel. But the Full English Breakfast was very bad. And the bed was to small (or I was to tall / big to fit in).

Next day we left to visit some farms and see what we have bought (alpacaseller) and how the ones were doing which were still overthere for mating... We did see super beautifull animals, with super fleeces but for much higher prices we were used to pay in the Netherlands. Learned a lot..., maybe laughed to much but really did have a great time with the people who invited us to stay overnight at their farm. Very interesting life-stories were been told. I really like the British....

At 03.00 uur Tuesday/Wednesday we get back in Haaften. It was a very exhausting trip. But it was certainly worth it...!

Wednesdaymorning: slowly getting my normal pattern back...!


Many greetings, Leo

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Saturday, 11 July 2009

Test automatic mail...

By this underscored "Mail the alpaca-vet" at the end of every article on this blog you can directly ask your questions about alpacas.

English, German or Dutch language please...

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BEW Alpaca

Blue eyed white (BEW) alpacas remain one of the most controversial subjects in the alpaca industry. Those who don't own any, rarely understand the facts about them. Those who own them, generally, don't have a problem and often refer to them as their favorite alpacas or a favorite of farm visitors.
BEW's come from the breeding of two animals that each carry the white spot gene and the BEW allele variant of that gene. White-spot genes are found in white faced, tuxedo, white legs, pinto or virtually any alpaca with as little as a few white hairs as well as grey alpacas. That is a whole lot of animals!
The pairing of two alpacas with white or grey markings bring a one in four (1-4) chance of a BEW birth. However, the mating of one of these animals with a solid colored animal, should not get a BEW cria. Selective breeding is something all farms should practice.

I (Leo) think is not controversiel to breed with thes BEW's. For example: If you take the Australian shepherd. Merle x merle is not done. You get 25 % of deaf/lethal pups. In alpacas it is the same... DON'T GO FOR BEW SIRE X BEW MARE!!! ALWAYS USE A SOLID COLOR. BEW sires should not be used.

It is an utopia to think we can remove / decrease this "genentic disorder" out of our the population of alpacas worldwide..., because any animal with some with hairs could be a carrier for this gen.

Many greetings,

Leo van Merwijk

Clik here for a good scientific article about BEW alpacas:

Monday, 6 July 2009

New born criae (alpacas)

Born on the 4th of july!


After 12 months pregnancy two of our imported girls (Belgium and England) have given birth. Two little girls were born.

The first, a very beautiful chocolat (rare) brown, was born on friday 3th of july. We decided (Marieke and I) that this was the first year (2009) we really are seriously breeding for better genetics. So we have to "come up with a system for naming". We agreed to give the new born alpacas a name by the year they were born, using the alphabet.
All alpacas born in 2009 will get a name started with an A. 2010 With a B and so on...
So we call our brown girl: AOL (stands for Alpacas of the Lowlands): Aoibheann Princess of the Lowlands.
Aoibheann means "beautifull" in Irish. It is pronounced as EE-ven.

On saterday our Belgium mother was on strike. She give us a very bright little white girl. She was racing on our fields and making contact with the other mares where the brown cria was staying with his mother and was sleeping on the grass.
We named her: AOL: Ailbhe Duchess of the Lowlands
Ailbhe - meaning "white, noble, bright". It is pronounced as Elvy
She has a very soft fleece (feels realy unique and very straight and beautifull legs).

On sunday we had a better look on her and we saw that she has blue eyes. Hmmm, just our luck! I'll get back on this subject in a future topic.... BEW's - Blue Eyes White Alpacas. I tested her..., and she is certainly not blind or deaf. Well that's a relief!!!
And of course always check the placenta. It has to come off in several hours. But better is in half an hour after birthing.

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Bata4en - Animal Clinic
Enggraaf 22 - 24
4175 ER Haaften
0031 (0) 418 – 591302 (monday to friday)

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