Lincoln County’s Robinson family shows alpacas may offer Oklahoma ranchers new opportunities

Oklahoma State University  
By: Oklahoma State University
Photo: Courtesy of Alpaca Culture

Original content from Oklahoma State University.

Business is literally humming at Land-Run Alpacas near Agra, Oklahoma, for that is the sound Sheila and John Robinson’s emotive herd of huacayas make, be they curious, content, worried, cautious or just plain bored.

“You do have to watch out for the spitting, though,” said Sheila, who with her husband John started Land-Run Alpacas in 2015 after moving to rural Lincoln County from Edmond a few years earlier. “Alpacas are very communicative and you can learn to read their body language, but they will spit when they are afraid or want to show dominance.”

Their furry tufts, long slender necks, engaging eyes and coy grins – yes, alpacas grin – make them memorable animals. As an agricultural enterprise, however, the big payoff may be that alpacas are shorn annually, producing a specialty fiber that has been described as stronger than mohair, finer than cashmere, smoother than silk, softer than cotton, warmer than goose down and better-breathing than thermal knits.                                                                                          

Read the rest of this story and view the photos at Oklahoma State University

Demand for Alpaca fiber on the rise

Fashionating World 
By: Fashionating World
Photo: Courtesy of Alpaca Culture

Original content from Fashionating World.

The alpaca fiber market is expected to have astounding growth in the coming years. Alpaca is a natural fiber that provides more warmth minus the scratchy texture of wool. Alpaca clothing is warm, soft, and extremely comfortable.

The market is witnessing high growth mainly due to an upsurge in demand for alpaca fiber fleeces and other types of fashion accessories made with alpaca fiber. As the trend of offering highly sustainable and eco-friendly garments and accessories is gaining popularity in the fashion apparel industry, the alpaca fiber market is growing at a rapid pace with the surging demand for warm and soft alpaca fiber.

As high genetic merits can lead to producing large quantities of high-quality alpaca fiber, manufacturers in the alpaca fiber market are putting efforts into providing nutritious feed to alpacas. Nutrition makes a significant impact on the health and reproduction capabilities of alpacas, and ultimately helps to obtain softer and high-quality alpaca fiber.                                                                                          

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Noble County Fair Alpaca Show

The Goshen News 
By: The Goshen News
Photo: Courtesy of Alpaca Culture

Original content from The Goshen News.

Members of the Noble County Alpaca Club show off their alpacas in showmanship and obstacle course challenges                                                                                             

Watch the video at The Goshen News.

Goats, alpacas, miniature ponies, oh my!

Hometown Weekly 
By: Amelia Tarallo
Photo: Courtesy of Alpaca Culture

Original content from Hometown Weekly.

Drive up the road to Unity Sanctuary and you’ll notice a few things.

The first is probably the apiary, buzzing with bees, that you pass. As you pull into the parking lot, you’ll notice the goats, staring at you as if they knew you were coming. Then, when you actually listen, you’ll hear the call of numerous Guinea hens; if you’re lucky, you may actually spot their hoard wandering about the sanctuary. Finally, once you get out of the car, you’ll realize just how massive this sprawling sanctuary actually is. Horses, miniature horses, ponies, goats, a varied number of birds, pigs, alpacas, a llama, cows and more all have found their safe haven at Unity Sanctuary.

Unity Farm was created by people who started off simply as animal lovers. The idea for Unity Farm began when Lara Heilbrun went to college. Her parents, John and Kathy Halamka, started doing research. Neither of them had a background in farming or agriculture, but they were determined to make their dream of a farm into reality. They read numerous books, spoke to those with experience, and sought advice from vets. Quickly, Unity Farm was established. “I came home and there were all these animals that needed taking care of that my parents had adopted," remarks Lara Heilbrun.

A few years into this endeavor, and they are still perfecting how they run the sanctuary. "It's all a learning experience. I'm definitely learning something new every day about what animals need and what they don't need," says Heilbrun.
                                                                                                          
Read the rest of this story at Hometown Weekly