Getting a new alpaca is so exciting because you have a new fuzzy baby to add to the herd. Although getting a new alpaca is exciting and fun, it can also be a pretty serious matter. There is a lot more to it than just putting your new paca into the pasture and watching everyone become best friends forever. I didn’t really know exactly what to expect but I didn’t think there would be any major issues. Well let me just tell you what actually happened…
I knew that every herd had an alpha male, one of the boys who is in charge, the top rung of the ladder. In our small herd of three there wasn’t a clear alpha male. After they first arrived I kept watching to see who would take over and try to dominate the others. I kept waiting and waiting…. no one really seemed alpha. All of our guys were pretty even it seemed. Well now we know who the alpha is…
Nicholas is the alpha male. No one has any more questions or will ever question who is the alpha male of this herd.
Bringing Oscar into the pasture
I wish I had some pictures to post on bringing Oscar in but this was kind of an all hands on deck experience so I didn’t have anyone to take the pictures. We chose Raoul to be the peace maker and go out to the trailer to meet Oscar. See look at Raoul, he looks like the friendly type. Anyway, we put a halter on Raoul and led him out to the trailer before we took Oscar out. The two boys did great meeting each other. No spitting, screaming, mounting or other behavior we all half expected. It seemed like these two were friends right away. We led them both into the pasture to meet the other two boys. After everyone sniffed we let Raoul and Oscar off of their leads and let them go to the herd. For the first little while all the boys stood around in a group and it looked like everyone was happy with each other and that was that. We were so pleased that all of us went inside after about a half an hour to have some coffee and chat alpaca chat. I bet you are guessing there was more to it than that…. yup, there is.
Spit hit the fan
After our coffee we went back outside to check on the boys. Let me just show you what we found…
Nicholas was chasing poor Oscar around the pasture as fast as he could screaming, spitting, knocking him down, biting his ears and just acting crazy. In the time that we had coffee Nicholas decided to show himself as the alpha male and let Oscar and everyone else know that he was in charge. After talking to a few different alpaca resources we found out that we just have to let them work it out. Which means they are going to fight until Oscar submits and Nicholas realizes that Oscar isn’t trying to take over the herd.
Let your lip hang low
When alpacas fight hard their lip drops so they can’t close their mouth. It’s a clear sign that someone is upset. When there is a lot of stress they also flare their nostrils. You put these two together you get one crazy looking alpaca.
Nicholas has pretty much had this look since Oscar arrived. Things have started to settle down a little bit. Nicholas isn’t going after Oscar quite as much and it looks like we might be on the road to peace.