Tuesday, 18 November 2014

How they have grown...

 Its been a beautiful bright autumn day here today, so I decided to get some cria photos whilst I had the chance. As you will see we have not managed to keep them very clean, and the photo quality is variable, but for those of you who like to see the cria grow, here we have some of the 2014 crop...

Beck Brow Jimmy Choos (black) is sired by Viracocha Black Sabbath and is from a fawn dam; Beck Brow Snooty Boots, who is sired by Waradene St Patrick (fawn). The fawn female born here on agistment is sired by Lavender Park Tulley. Her dam is now pregnant to Timbertop CT Goldmine,who shares his sire with Tulley.

We only put Beck Brow Explorer with one non-white female and Beck Brow Kitty La Kat was the result. In the foreground is Prima Sebastian (sire; Viracocha Black Sabbath)

 Beck Brow High Five is full brother to Beck Brow Explorer (sire: EP Cambridge Navigator of Houghton Hall) and his dam is one of our star females; Cambridge Camilla)

Here he is again. Normally he doesn't like to get in the photos!

Beck Brow Honey Bun (sire: Waradene St Patrick of EPC) looking very cute with those dark ears. Foreground is Beck Brow Illusion (sire; EP Cambridge Mirage)

Foreground; Beck Brow Soprano sired by Beck Brow Explorer. Dam EP Cambridge Aria (dam of Valley Alpacas The Diplomat)

This is one of my favourites of 2014; sired by Beck Brow Explorer she is full sister to Beck First Edition (Supreme Champion NWAG Alpaca Championships 2014). She has a very similiar fleece to her brother but beige in colour.

Beck Brow Asterisk (sire; Beck Brow Explorer) was rejected by his dam initially. Beck Brow Fine Romance rejected her first cria (Beck Brow Foxy Sox) and tried to do the same again. But with the help of Sepia (homeopathic remedy) and a persistent Asterisk all ended well. Typical crimpy chest of the Explorer cria.

 I realised that I hadn't taken a decent photo of Beck Brow Bond 007 (BBB007 is on the right) our only Timbertop CT Goldmine cria of 2014. Born the 9th of October he is a late born cria, but is gaining weight well. Here he is with Beck Brow Mr Darcy (left) who was due the same day but was born 3 weeks earlier.

Beck Brow Adventurer (sire; Beck Brow Explorer) is adorable. His dam obviously hasn't the best milk supply, so he shares the milk from our multi- championship winning female Bozedown Celestrial, with her daughter; his best friend Beck Brow Trendsetter!

Winning the prize for looking like a scruff-bag despite having a fabulous fleece in there, is Beck Brow Stardust (Sire; EP Cambridge Spartacus. Dam: Cambridge Stargazer). I suppose she did travel all the way from New Zealand.

Beck Brow Bunny Girl (Sire; Sanjo Shalimar) just never takes a good photo despite being rather lovely in the flesh, with a very dense fleece (Dam; EP Cambridge Courtesse)

Beck Brow Kitty La Kat again.

Beck Brow Hot Shot (foreground) and Beck Brow Mr Darcy (both sired by Beck Brow Explorer)

Beck Brow Prime Suspect (Sired by Viracocha Black Sabbath)

Left to right Beck Brow Explorer progeny: Mr Darcy, Adventurer and Trendsetter.

Looks like Beck Brow Mr Darcy (centre) might be well named...posing well!

Prima Sebastian (Sire: Viracocha Black Sabbath) getting in the frame again.

Paul has been building yet another field shelter. A small one this time for one of our isolation paddocks. It will be used for visiting females or when we have additions to our herd.

Taking of additions, our latest two to arrive on the farm and still in isolation, are Furze Park Sputnik (front) and Furze Park Elvira (both sired by Furze Park Telstar). We are hoping that Sputnik doesn't get any hanky panky ideas, but looking at the back of his neck, I suspect Elvira is in charge!

Lastly Beck Brow Idris (sire Lillyfield Jack of Spades) enjoying the view.

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Back from blogging hibernation

Anyone who follows us on Facebook will know that we are alive, and that all is well. My blogging has been rather neglected, partly because I haven't had time to take any photos, and partly because I have forgotten what we have been up to, its been so long. I think that we all end up having a little blog hibernation after the births are over.

Firstly after all the waiting, Adelle had our long awaited Timbertop CT Goldmine cria on the 9th of October. A white male whom we have called Bond 007 (there is a bit of a tale to that one!) We have been extremely lucky with the weather and he has come on well, gaining 3 kilos in three weeks. Early impressions are that he is very fine and dense.

He is now on weekly weighing. We weigh our cria (using a sling and balance scales) every day for the first 5-7 days at least. It then depends on how they are thriving, but they go on to a minimum of weekly weigh-ins after that. This means we pick up any weight loses quickly, and we have a recent record of weight, so if any one looks off colour we can assess weight gain/loss fairly accurately.

Thus it was a bit of an anxious time when our large Salter P2000 scales went on the blink. Well more than went on the blink...they went kaput...£750 and four years old! It took over a week for it to be decided that they were not repairable, and another week or so for a new set to be delivered. In the meantime we had 32 cria to weigh with Paul holding a cria and standing on a  set of bathroom scales.

We ended up with 13 females and 10 male cria after the start of 9 girls in a row. We also had 6 males and 3 females born to agisted alpacas on the farm, so pretty even in the end.

Yesterday I completed the registrations of our 2014 cria. With the BAS National Show entries commencing in less than a month's time, I thought I best have them ready to enter. With only 360 spaces I expect entries will close early again this year...be warned!

Easter-Wood Adelle with Beck Brow Bond 007 (24 hours old)

We did manage to have an amazing break in Oman. It was sheer luxury staying at the Shangri La Al Husn, an adults only hotel (adults only as in no children...rather than x-rated) where we really did have a chill out holiday. Paul returned to head straight off to Spain with work. leaving me to prepare for the North West Alpaca Group Workshop which was held on the farm. Tim Hey shared his knowledge and expertise with 40+ members of the group, and everyone agreed, lots had be learnt

 Members and guests of NWAG enjoying the workhop with Tim Hey of Inca Alpaca.

As I said earlier I keep meaning to write a blog but never like to be short of photos. However my efforts have been poor. I did think that I would  get some action shots of the females with cria running in at feed time, but I had the camera on the wrong setting so that they were too quick!

I have marked out High Five in the first photo...

Can you spot High Five reving up...

here he has swung round the outside to gain position

he is so fast I havent managed to run backwards quickly enough!

Today set off murky and has progressed on to drizzle. My plans to get photos of some of the yealing boys, and to get them on to Alpacaseller, have thus been delayed again. It might be Spring at this rate!