Alpaca leading the way?

By: Andrew Woods
Photo: By Gary Yokoyama

Original content from Mecardo.        

 Alpaca numbers in Australia are estimated to be between 170,000 and 450,000, with the higher estimate considerable in view that the sheep flock only numbers around 70 million. Wool ranging from 24 through to 26.8 micron is blended with alpaca. The combination of alpaca numbers and some relationship of the alpaca fibre to wool are behind this brief look into this ancient luxury fibre.

In volume terms Alpaca is middling amongst the animal fibres, on par with mohair and angora volumes. Table 1 shows the estimated world production for 2015 of all fibres (96 million tonnes) and then by animal fibre which ranges from wool (the largest animal fibre) down to guanaco fibre which has an annual production around 2 tonnes.

Some 80% of world alpaca production comes from Peru and Bolivia with three quarters of this production now going to China for processing. In these trade flows alpaca reflects what goes on in the wool market.

Read the rest of this story and view the graphs at Mecardo

Embroidering skill on show at library as CWA hits the town

Central Western Daily
By: Max Stainkamph
Photo: Courtesy of Central Western Daily   
Photo Caption: The 12 days of Christmas, knitted out in full by Helen Woods.

Original content from Central Western Daily.        

The patterns are exquisite, every thread is perfectly stitched and the embroidery is fantastic.

From beautiful machine printed tapestries to the 12 Days of Christmas knitted out in full – all 12 drummers drumming and all 11 pipers piping all the way down to the partridge in a pair tree, embroidery work of every type was on display to be judged at the CWA hall in Robertson Park on Monday.

Over 50 pieces were laid out in the CWA hall to be judged, before they were to be moved to the Orange City Library to be on display until winners are announced on Friday.

The Central West group of the Country Women’s Association is holding their annual Handicraft Exhibition in Orange this week, with seven of the 15 CWA branches which make up the region sending items in for judging.

One of those tasked with judging was Kerry Owers, who said they were looking for “neat, clean work”.

“We look for finishing off and ensuring threads are tied off,” she said.

“It’s been quite good, the alpacas [pieces made from alpacas wool] are lovely.”

Read the rest of this story, view the photo gallery and watch the video at Central Western Daily

Oldest alpaca award goes to 24-year-old Swan Lake

The Weekly Times
By: The Weekly Times
Photo: Courtesy of The Weekly Times   
Original content from The Weekly Times.        

GLEN Sharp from Warrnambool has upped the ante when it comes to elderly alpacas.

Glen who runs Dunroamin Alpaca Stud at Warrnambool has an old girl called Swan Lake who is 24, beating 20 year old Donovan who we featured recently.

“Normally they only live until about 18 but this one had her last cria (baby alpaca) aged 19 and she is still going strong,” Glen said.

Read the rest of this story at The Weekly Times.

Weanling alpacas stolen from Softfoot Alpacas in Hindmarsh Valley on Fleurieu Peninsula

The Times 
By: Dani Brown  
Photo: Courtesy of Softfoot Alpacas   
Photo Caption: TAKEN FROM FARM: Twenty-three weanlings from Softfoot Alpacas were stolen over the last week, and police hope the public can help locate them.

Original content from The Times.        

Twenty-three weanling alpacas have been stolen from a property in Hindmarsh Valley, and local police are calling for public help to get them home.

Sometime last week, five males and 18 females aged about three months old were taken from Softfoot Alpacas on Kenny Road.

Police believe someone rounded them up into a paddock yard on the property and then lifted them into a trailer before they were taken away.

The group of alpacas are a mix of colours.

Softfoot Alpacas co-owner Gary Retallick said he felt sad that someone could come onto their 600-hectare property, open a gate and take their animals.

“I’m sad. You think you’re doing a nice honourable rural industry and everybody supports you… then someone decided they needed our animals more than us,” he said.

Read the rest of this story at The Times.