Friday, 17 February 2012

A stillborn cria at seven months gestation.

If you are reading this and you do not breed alpacas, then I would suggest that you should avoid the photos at the bottom of this blog.

After a very pleasant start to my birthday it has gone downhill rapidly; Silverstream Galaxy ET is one of our elite girls. She is extra special not only because she has fantastic genetics, but because she is just the sweetest female, who has the most adorable cria. Add to that... that she is just the loveliest mum and her cria adore her...then you will understand how upset we all are that she has delived a still born at seven months gestation (due 16/06/2012 taking average gestations for her).

I saw something wasn't quite right as soon as I went out after lunch. She was sitting on her own by the fence. Then as she stood I saw her tail was straight out and I feared the worst. At this stage all that could be seen was a little of the fluid filled sac, but within 20 minutes she had delivered; A male cria who was perfectly formed but with no fleece yet (confirmation that the fleece growth is during the last trimester).

Galaxy obviously knew that the cria could not be viable, as she didn't even get up to check on him for sometime. She just sat and wimpered as I stroked her neck. She did eventually give the cria a sniff, but then quietly walked away up the field. Her grief so apparent.

If someone has any magic way to make this feel better for Mum, and for us, please bottle it and send it over. I try to harden myself up for these eventualities but nothing works...and of course we have to think if only...if only she hadn't galloped at top speed from the furthest away field to be fed this morning...but really we have to accept that loses happen. That is two St Patrick male cria from two of our best females that we have lost so far this year...lets hope for better luck from now on.

I have shared some photos which are not pleasant so please avoid unless you think that you may find them helpful for reference. I did hesitate about whether to share, but I am sure that many of you, like myself, will not have seen a cria born at this stage of development.


Galaxy...the nose is out at this point


Seven months gestation male cria...Blackberry for reference of size


The two horns clearly seen

16 comments:

  1. I am so sorry for your loss, Barbara. That's really hard. We've had losses too and it never gets easier. Are you getting a PM done? I hope that brings some answers if you are.

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  2. So sorry to hear your sad news, especially on your birthday.

    I hope you all, especially Galaxy are feeling happier soon.

    Thank you for sharing the photos, they were indeed interesting. I was amazed at the size of the cria already.

    Karen x

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  3. So sorry to hear of your sad loss, no matter how many times it happens and no matter how hard you try to convince yourself it is all part of keeping animals it is always hurts deeply. But sadly its mother nature and she can be very cruel at times.

    I think you are brave to share especially the photos, I believe it does help to share your loss, both for yourself and for other breeders. I hope Galaxy gets over her loss very quickly

    Ginnie x

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  4. I, too, am very sorry this has happened. Mum will go on to have more wonderful cria (although that's cold comfort for all at the moment).

    Take it easy -

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  5. Terrible news. So sorry for you and Galaxy who really is the perfect alpaca in quality, nature and motherhood. Hope the herd are looking after her for you. Thanks for the photo's its very thoughtful of you to be thinking of others at this time.

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  6. So sorry to hear your news. It's heartbreaking but nature has a reason, it wont be because she ran down the field..much more likely that her body knew it wasn't quite right. I know it sounds gruesome but did you weigh it? I ask because Pegassou lost twins a couple of years back after 7.5 months gestation and they only weighed in a 1.5 kilos and about 0.75 kilos so I was wondering how that compared with yours? I too took photos for future reference and because we wanted a record of her 2 lovely black twin boys.

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  7. I am so very sorry, Barbara. A horrible thing to happen.
    Thank you, though, for sharing the photos - I never realised they were so big at that stage.

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  8. Sad news indeed and terrible timing. I know that there is nothing you could do to care better for your animals. Dont dwell on the what if's. - I'll be thinking of you.

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  9. So sorry Barbara, horrible thing to have happen.

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  10. So sorry Barbara, especially on your birtherday.

    As you know from my blog last night we lost one a couple of weeks ago, not quite as far gone but just as distressing. I also took photo's for future reference and weighed him. He was only just over 700 grams but perfectly formed. Like you say you never get hardened to it.

    I do find it amazing how the girls seem to know when a fetus isn't viable, Imala didn't hang round hers either yet if they are born alive they seem so much more reluctant to leave.

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  11. So sorry to hear of your sad news tonight and yet, thank you for the photos which allow us to note the size of the cria. Keep your spirits up and given time, Galaxy will be having a look around for a fanciable herd sire.

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  12. So sorry to read your news, its a very sad time .... I gave my girl Homeopathy, when she lost her baby, and it did help...just for a suggestion,you could always try Ignatia for bereavement ....it worked for us ! might be worth a try !! I do hope this is the end of the sad times....for you all at Beckbrow ! Jayne

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  13. Just read your sad blog Barbara, and we too are sorry for your loss. Well done for having the courage to show the photos which will be helpful to breeders for sure. Galaxy will understand the situation, she'll be 'hard-wired' by nature to pick herself up and get going. Chin up. Take care. Shirley & Robbie

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  14. Sorry to hear about this set-back Barbara, and thanks for being bold enough to share the pictures and experience publicly for the benefit of other breeders.

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  15. How sad, poor you, poor Galaxy. Well done for writing a thoughtful and helpful blog under such horrible circumstances. Big hugs. Bev x

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  16. Really sorry Barbara , ditto all the above , horrible for you all .

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