Saturday, 23 February 2013

Cria behaviour

We have three 3mth old cria, Poppy (born here to Malibu), Tegan Teacake and Melony.  All three love playing together, but all three are very different and we are starting to have some trouble with Tegan.

Poppy (aka POPSTAR)
Poppy is very shy, like her Mum, and we have to make an effort to catch her in the pen to get her used to being handled quickly and then released. 
Melony and Mum, Harmony
Melony is a little easier, her Mum (Harmony) is very relaxed and placid, she comes up for a sniff - and is handled the same way as Poppy - reluctantly but quickly.
Tegan & 2y.o
Tegan & Daughter
Tegan however is very outgoing and forward.  She was played with excessively during her first six weeks by the little girl whose farm we purchased her from.  Of course, then Daughter and 15y.o son took up the reins, and Tegan happily played wrestling with them in the paddock.  Tegan is a little like a dog, she runs up and wants to play. However yesterday, when Daughter was home from Uni for the weekend, she was seated in the paddock when Tegan reared up on her and chested her!  Last night, we were giving hay to the cows, walking through the Alpaca paddock, and Tegan tried to take on the wheelbarrow!!
Now I have a confused Alpaca, who thinks we are Alpacas.  I have stopped the (grown-up) kids from playing with her, hopefully her behaviour will correct itself once I start halter-training next month?

In the mean-time, we bought the other little one a tractor of his own (ALL he talks about is his Dad's tractor being lifted out of the dam by the crane - I think he is psychologically damaged!!)


  1. Oh dear it is a fine balance between handling cria so they are not scared but not encouraging naughty behaviour. As you rightly point out it needs to be stopped as an adult will hurt someone doing the same. Good luck with reminding her that you are the human I.e boss and she the alpaca. A tap back with a frisbee when your space is invaded might help.

    Love the photo of Melody.

  2. Well done for stopping her quickly! When one of my bottle feds was a cria she started getting over familiar and, as Barbara mentions, we used a quick tap on the nose if she started getting out of order - she is fine now.

  3. We have had a close encounter with one of our boys. Also very confident when a cria he was encouraged and was so funny and lovable. Less so now he is full grown. Now is the time to sort this out. The title of your blog could have equally been 'Human behavior' You have some degree of control over that ! We made a concerted effort to change our behavior with him and learned a few tell tale signs and tricks. Invading personal space is the key thing. 2seconds of sniffing you out is OK, after that he needs to be pushed away. Hovering your hand over his head will surly move him away. We have now got to a situation where he knows a raised flat hand in front of him is a warning sign and he backs off. We found the following quite useful

  4. Oh just the sweetest post ... all the babies, including the furless one, are adorable!