National Alpaca Farm Days in Ahualoa (Sept 25-26)

MEDIA RELEASE

Several Alpacas including two cria (baby Alpaca) playing with a piece of bark. Photo by Viridae

On September 25 and 26, alpaca breeders from across the United States and Canada will invite the public to come to their farm or ranch to meet their alpacas and learn more about these inquisitive, unique animals. From 10am to 3pm, Ahualoa Alpacas will welcome guests to join them for activities including an introduction to the alpaca, alpaca products, and fiber arts demonstration by the Handweavers’ Hui, all free!

Ahualoa Alpacas is located at 46-3859 Kahana Drive, Honokaa, in Ahualoa. Take the left then immediate right onto Old Mamalahoa Hwy at Tex’s, travel four miles to Kahana Drive. Turn left on Kahana and travel 1 ½ miles. The farm will be on the right.

About Alpacas

Alpacas, cousins to the llama, are beautiful, intelligent animals native to the Andean Mountain range of South America, particularly Peru, Bolivia, and Chile. The United States first commercially imported alpacas in 1984. There are now over 150,000 ARI (Alpaca Registry, Inc.) registered alpacas in North America.

There are two types of alpacas in the United States today. Although almost physically identical, what distinguishes the two types of alpacas is their fiber. The Huacaya (wa-Ki’-ah) is the more common of the two and has a fluffy, extremely fine coat. The Suri is the rarer of the two and has fiber that is silky and resembles pencil-locks.

Adult alpacas stand at approximately 36 inches at the withers and generally weigh between 150 and 200 pounds. They do not have horns, hooves, claws or incisors. Alpacas are alert, intelligent, curious, and predictable. Social animals that seek companionship, they communicate most commonly by softly humming.

About Alpaca Fiber

Alpacas are shorn, without harm, every twelve to eighteen months. They produced five to ten pounds of luxurious fiber. Long ago, alpaca fiber was reserved for royalty. Today it is purchased in its raw fleece form by hand-spinners and fiber artists. Knitters buy it as yarn.

Because of its soft texture, alpaca fiber is sometimes compared to cashmere. Making the fiber even more coveted, it has the luster of silk. Alpaca is just as warm as, yet 1/3 the weight of wool. It comes in 22 natural colors, yet can be dyed any desired shade.

Containing no lanolin, alpaca fiber is also naturally hypoallergenic. Most people who are sensitive to wool find that they can wear alpaca without the itching or irritation they feel from wool because alpaca fiber is smooth. Additional performance characteristics include: stretch, water repellency, and odor reduction. For travelers, clothing made from alpaca is desirable because it is wrinkle-resistant.

About AOBA

Headquartered in Nashville, TN, the Alpaca Owners & Breeders Association (AOBA) serves to facilitate the expansion of a strong and sustainable alpaca industry through the growth and development of the national herd and its products. Since AOBA’s formation in 1988, its membership has grown steadily to more than 4,000 members with over 150,000 registered alpacas in North America.

To find out more about National Alpaca Farm Days visit www.NationalAlpacaFarmDays.com To learn more about Ahualoa Alpacas, visit openherd.com/FarmPage.aspx?far… or call 808-343-4567

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