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Alpacas are functional ruminants (chew their chud) and are predominantly grazers and occasional browsers.
They require approximately the same daily equivalent of food and fencing requirements as a sheep. Fresh drinking water must be available at all times. If you live in a high rainfall area a shelter is required, Shade trees or shelters will be required during summer.
Alpacas have a lifespan of approximately 20 years.
Teeth, toenails and internal parasites need to be attended to as required, and they require vaccination with 5-1 sheep/cattle vaccine twice a year. They are shorn once a year. Alpacas are relatively hardy and husbandry of non breeding stock is simple. However they have a very strong herding instinct and most will fret if kept in isolation.
Wethers (castrated males) are the easiest to care for and are ideal for novice owners. Alpacas can make excellent pets, however all alpacas have individual natures and you should specify at the time of purchase that you require a docile and trained alpaca.
Alpacas are of the species 'South American Camelids' and are related to the Llama but are much smaller than the Llama.