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Thursday, January 23, 2020

Happy New Year 2020

Happy New Year 2020 to all from New Groove Alpacas!

The second half of 2019 was busy and somewhat challenging to say the least.

We celebrated the farm store Grand Opening on September 28th in conjunction with National Alpaca Farm Days. We were thrilled to see so many visitors to the farm and grateful for the help from family, friends, and volunteers from University of Delaware FFA members to keep the day running smoothly. In October, Kuzco and friends attended the Fall Craft Fair at Willey Farms and were a HUGE hit. We are thrilled to see this local business get back up on it's feet after the devastating fire in November of 2018. September thru November saw our attendance at several other indoor craft and vendor fairs both locally and downstate.

With things so busy we made a decision in the early Fall to hold off doing any breedings until Spring 2020. We hope to send Hot, Demi and Mariela down to their original farm to be bred in early May and Sweet Spot and Tempera in late June. That means the earliest we can expect crias will be Spring 2021.

Mid-November we unfortunately ran into our first major health emergency. Alpaca Ambassador Indy managed to injure his right eye and it developed into a pretty nasty corneal ulcer and infection by the time it was noticed. Indy ended up being transported to New Bolton Center in Kennett Square, PA in the back of my Scion Xb (because at that point I had never hitched or towed the alpaca trailer and at that point it wasn't a good time to attempt it for the first time) and for anyone wondering....yes, a 110 pound alpaca DOES fit...although we were hard pressed to convince him of that and pretty much had to pick him up to get him in (which, incidentally, requires at least two adults). Indy ended up at New Bolton for 5 days to get the infection under control but luckily did not require surgery. However, he came home with many tubes and lines to facilitate administering meds every 4 hours around the clock and was restricted to a stall in the barn. That lasted for 5 weeks although as he improved the vet extend the time between doses to the point that we were up to every 8 hours by the end. Not to be outdone, about a week and a half after Indy's initial injury, MacTavish did the same exact thing, although it was noticed much sooner (as Mac got a SERIOUS bang trim after Indy's injury) and wasn't nearly as badly infected. Mac made the trip to New Bolton in a more civilized manner (as it became necessary for me to learn to tow the alpaca trailer by myself) but did end up in "solitary" with Indy for the remainder of the time. Mac's injury left Kuzco in the pasture by himself and he was NOT happy and wasn't shy about letting us know it. Concerned, about him developing ulcers from the stress of being by himelf, a call to my wonderful Suri mentor and I was on my way to her farm to pick up Ronin and Coalition to be pasture buddies for Kuzco....and everyone is still living happily ever after. We never did figure out exactly how Indy and Mac injured their eyes (but alpaca eye injuries are not uncommon) but they both had full recoveries and have been back in the pasture since right before Christmas. I keep a close watch on everyone's eyeballs now.

Looking ahead in 2020, four of our animals (Indy, Kuzco, Sweet Spot and Tempera) will be attending the Alpaca Owners Association National show in Fort Wayne, Indiana in March. We are very excited to be able to exhibit with other alpaca owners from across the country. We will also be taking Indy and Kuzco to the Mid-Atlantic Alpaca Association (MAPACA) show in Harrisburg PA in April. April will also be our shearing month and we look forward to having our expert crew from Mariacher Shearing to the farm to get our herd ready for the warm summer months.

We will also be hosting a Spring Open Farm Day which will be posted on the website as soon as we have a shearing date assigned. We will also again be participating in National Alpaca Farm Days the last weekend in September. Keep an eye on our events page for announcements of these and other activities.