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Llama

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4.2/5

(50 Reviews)


Scientific name: Lama glama

The basics:
The Llama is a South American member of the camel family. Llamas originated in the Andes Mountains and were used as pack animals and sources of meat and fiber by the Incas and other natives.

In the last two to three decades, the Llama and its cousin the Alpaca have become common pets, companions, and wilderness packing animals mainly because of their calm temperaments, intelligence, and ease of maintenance. Since 1999, the Miniature Llama, a registered adult Llama that is no more than 38 inches at the withers, has been promoted as a more pet-appropriate animal.

Appearance / health:
Llamas grow to an average of 5.5 ft. tall. Body colors range from white to brown, gray, or black, with patterns oftentimes piebald (spotted black and white). The fur is long, soft, wooly, and lanolin-free. The tail is short and the ears are long and curved inward (banana-shaped).

Compared to alpacas, llamas are larger with longer heads. Unlike the alpaca, the llama has no eyelashes. Compared to the camel, the llama has no dorsal hump. The feet are long and narrow; instead of hooves, the llama has two toes that are separated and with thick and leathery plantar pads that give them good foothold on uneven and rocky ground.

Llamas are typically hardy and disease-resistant, requiring less feed compared to horses of the same size. Their natural resilience against extreme cold, wind, and snow can be attributed to the thick wool that covers the back, neck, and sides. They are also able to withstand head because of the short wool in other parts of the body.

Behavior / temperament:
Llamas are highly territorial. Males will spit and fight each other aggressively and noisily to gain dominance. Females usually settle by spitting but males are more physical, especially against intruding males, often biting and kicking, until the issue is settled. Because of their intelligence and natural tendencies to protect their herd, they can be trained to be guard animals for herds of alpacas, goats, sheep, and other livestock.

Housing / diet:
Llamas are best kept in secure farm conditions that keep them safe from natural predators like lions, leopards, and cougars. Sheds will protect them from extreme and harsh weather conditions. Water should always be available although llamas are known to last several days without drinking.

Llamas are herbivores, eating foliage including shrubs, grass, lichens, alfalfa hay, bromegrass hay, and corn silage. For optimum health and growth, llamas should be given commercial supplements and nutrients necessary for their size as well as the climate and the intensity and type of work they perform. Free-choice feeding is not recommended because left on their own, llamas will eat often and become fat.

wonderful

pack animals, versatile animal, fabulous fiber, master guardian llama, guard llama, hiking

challenging

berserk llama syndrome, loud screaming sound, toenail clipping, kicking, spitting, warmer climates

interesting

autistic granddaughter, obstacle training, great weedeaters, agility courses, community dung pile

Helpful Llama Review

Llama

From srosebeam Nov 21 2014 1:11PM

5/5

Llama Behavior Tip

Llama

From gpehk Oct 21 2015 2:05AM

2/5

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