SHEARING THE ALPACAS
This once-a-year task was always an adventure!
In 2009, we went to a farm sale to look for white doves with Sideshow Steve.
Instead, we were introduced to alpacas, and we were immediately fascinated by these cute and furry creatures.
We used to have horses, so we have a nice big barn and pastures on our property- perfect for alpacas.
We ended up with three very pretty boys, and named them Blackstone, Dante and Okito.
They were very sweet natured, easy to keep, and fun to be around.
But alpacas need to be sheared once a year for their health.
Since they come from the mountains of Peru, Virginia summer heat is deadly to alpacas if their fleece is not removed.
The first year we had the alpacas, we were still learning about them, so we had them transported to another farm for shearing.
THAT'S a story for telling another time!
We realized that the process was very complex only if you wanted to harvest the fleece in big sheets for processing.
We just wanted the alpacas to be fleece-free; we did not care about the condition of the sheared fleece.
We gave away the fleece to local artisans.
So we called our friend Lorraine, who is a terrific dog groomer.
She agreed to take on the challenge of becoming an "alpaca groomer".
Her dog clippers worked just fine!
And the alpacas loved the result, as you can see in the video.
So enjoy watching Lorraine shearing Blackstone and Dante!
And let us know in the comments below if you want to see more video and photos of the alpacas!