alpaca health

Extreme heat in NSW - taking care of your alpacas

We are all feeling the mercury rise, and this week extreme heat is emerging as an issue around the country.

Managing animals in high temperatures requires good forward planning. Keeping an eye on the weather forecasts, and developing a plan for days of high to extreme temperature is essential in ensuring that your animals will have sufficient shade and water on those very hot days.

Extreme heat causes significant stress for alpacas. There are a few simple guidelines you can follow to reduce the impacts of high temperatures on animals.

  • The provision of a plentiful supply of clean, cool water and shade is essential.

  • Water troughs or containers should be large enough and designed in such a way that all animals have easy access. The number of watering points and/or water flow should be increased if a large number of animals are kept together. Troughs or containers should be firmly fixed so they cannot overturn. They should be kept clean and should be designed and maintained to prevent injuries.

  • Animals need to be provided with shelter during extended periods of extreme temperatures. Shelter is especially important for very young or old animals or animals that are in poor condition or birthing.

  • It is recommended not to handle animals in extreme heat unless absolutely necessary. If necessary, make sure it is done as early or late in the day as possible when temperatures are lower.

Animals at high risk of heat stress include young animals and dark coloured animals These animals should be watched more closely for signs of heat stress during days of high temperature. Remember that alpacas are more prone to heat stress than sheep and goats. There are many signs of heat stress that you can look for in your animals. Some general signs of heat stress include:

  • panting

  • increased respiration rate

  • increased water intake

  • loss of appetite

  • listless/lethargy

  • increased salivation

  • in severe cases may become unconscious.

 

Remember: The most important things you can do for your animals in hot weather is to provide them with rest and shade in the hottest parts of the day, and plenty of clean cool water.

You have a responsibility to ensure the well-being of animals under your care. Animal Welfare - it's your duty to care.

This information taken from the Australian Alpaca Association. Visit their website for more information on caring and health of Alpacas. https://www.alpaca.asn.au

 

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Registered Alpaca Breeder in Wollombi Valley

Little Valley Farm is a member of the Australian Alpaca Association. That mean’s we have a registry of our alpaca’s and their birth lines. It also means for new alpaca owners, when you purchase an alpaca from us, you know what you will get - a happy, healthy, friendly alpaca.

Little Valley Farm also runs alpaca working shops and training days. Follow our facebook page for our 2019 event listings.

Alpaca fleece buyers day happens Nov - Dec - Jan every year where you get to purchase our beautiful fleece in white, fawn and chocolate brown.

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Alpaca supplies

Alpaca shearing season has started so make sure you have your vaccinations, worming, vitamins ready.  If you are low on supplies we have supplies available to purchase. Simply email us what you need and we can arrange pick up at Laguna. Please note, we don’t post as most of the supplies requires proper refrigeration.

Ivomec Injectable

Cydectin Injectable  

UltraVac 5:1 Injectable 

Propaca vitamins  (powder) 

ADE supplement Injectable  

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You can ask your your local vet to run a fecal worm count before worming so you don’t run the risk of over or under worming. We can supply the supplements in 1, 2 or 5 ml syringes so you don’t need to buy in bulk if you only have a couple of alpacas.

The day after shearing

The day after shearing. We are exhausted. Now it can rain! The alpacas are a little naked but happy. We are now ready for the hot summer days.

A very big thank you to our shearing team. The Cole family, Kierran, Socie, Frank, Frances and Drew Shearman Our favourite shearer who is gentle and kind with our alpacas. It’s a long exhausting day in the shed with a touch of spit-dodging.

The fleece is drying and our ‘fleece buyers day’ will be happening some time in November.

#littlevalleyfarm #alpacafarm #alpacabreeder #shearing #alpacagleece#alpacas  #lagunaNSW #wollombi #visitwollombi#touristdrive33 Daniela Riccio Drew Shearman Thank you!

I will do nothing today! Thank you, Daniela


Our dear sweet Lilly.

Our dear sweet Lilly.

PIC - do you have one?

When buying an alpaca or three, make sure you have a PIC for you property.  You will need a PIC (Property Identification Code) if you keep alpacas even as a hobby?

A PIC is an eight-character code allocated by the state department of agriculture (or an equivalent authority in each state or territory) to identify a livestock-producing property. The PIC forms the basis of Australia’s food safety and traceability programs and is used in cases of disease outbreaks, bushfires and animal emergencies.

Individuals must, under law, have a PIC if you own or keep 1 or more cows, sheep, goats, pigs,  deer, alpacas, llamas, horses, ponies, donkeys, or more than 100 poultry (i.e. domesticated fowl, chickens, ducks, geese, turkey, guinea fowl, pigeons, quail or pheasants) or 10 emus or ostriches.

In NSW all livestock owners and occupiers of land that carries livestock must have a PIC, regardless of whether the livestock are moved or not. This is a requirement under the Biosecurity (NLIS) Regulation 2017 and Biosecurity Act 2015.  Contact your Local Land Service to obtain your PIC today.   Click here on how to apply.

Watch the LLS video on PIC’s here.

When purchasing an alpaca from Little Valley Farm please ensure you have your PIC code ready and can be easily obtained from your Local Land Services. Refer to the link above to obtain yours. We will now include your PIC number on our invoice for traceability.  Image above courtesy of Cheryl Warning. Autumn 2017 at Little Valley Farm.

When purchasing an alpaca from Little Valley Farm please ensure you have your PIC code ready and can be easily obtained from your Local Land Services. Refer to the link above to obtain yours. We will now include your PIC number on our invoice for traceability.

Image above courtesy of Cheryl Warning. Autumn 2017 at Little Valley Farm.

Alpaca Health Winter 2018

Most farms would have enjoyed an extended period, where drenching has been unnecessary, due to dry conditions.

It would be advisable to faecal test, following rain or for those that primarily drench when they consider it necessary, to consider drenching now that the ground is moist.

Most areas have enjoyed some rain lately, drenching for Barbers Pole after a few wet days following an extended dry period may save a stressful and urgent situation, that comes with Barbers Pole burden.

Fluke is hard to diagnose and requires a specific drench, if animals are in very wet paddocks or paddocks that may be affected by swollen creeks or flowing water, then you need to keep this parasite on the radar.

Tape worm can also be an issue following extended dry conditions, in drought there is an increase in wildlife sharing our paddocks looking for food and water, they are renown for bring tape worm with them, please keep this in mind. Keeping a check on dung piles, for tape segments, is the undisputed evidence of tape presence, please check drenches are adequate to treat the parasite you are targeting..

Thank you to Deb Trostian, Animal Health and Welfare.  AAA NSW Region of the Australian Alpaca Association.   Click here to find out more about the AAA. 

Photo courtesy by Cheryl Warning. Autumn 2017 at Little Valley Farm

Photo courtesy by Cheryl Warning. Autumn 2017 at Little Valley Farm

Small Business Rebate 2018

Last year we applied for the Small Business Rebate for our alpaca farm.  It helped us set up some safety guide lines and have on-stock some PPE (Protective personal equipment), which we should have had from day one. 

Anyways, the rebate had us thinking about the alpaca pens set-up especially at shearing time when there are over 20+ alpacas lined up to be sheared, can be slightly chaotic especially for the couple of alpacas that are slightly nervous and flighty and the 5-6 people that are on-deck helping us out. 

We created five pens to sort and shuffle the alpacas in and out of the shearing bay. The rebate, had us thinking about the safety elements including gates and pens. 

I know its only a $500 rebate but it certainly helped out in the cost of the pens and gates.  

If you have an ABN you can apply for the $500 rebate back to small business owners who buy and install eligible safety items to address a safety problem in their workplace.

You can find out more on how to what to do to apply for Safe work NSW. Click here