The Nunoa Project In Peru: Update 5

Nuñoa Project  
By: Stephen R. Purdy, DVM
Photo: Courtesy of Nuñoa Project 

Fourth day of alpaca work in Pucara Peru

Today’s Nunoa Project community visit in the Peruvian altiplano was to LaUnion. The first farm was that of Mario Idme and his wife. They have a spectacular view from the house which looks out over a big valley with several mountain peaks in view. It takes quite a while to get there because the road is normally used only for motorcycles like the one they use to get back and forth to town for supplies. They have both Huacaya (fluffy) and Suri alpacas (think dreadlocks) along with a herd of sheep and several friendly dogs. They are very gentle people, probably in their mid-fifties in age, and it is reflected in the good temperaments of their animals. They used one of our males January to April 2017 and their excellent breeding management program resulted in a 96% pregnancy rate, the highest we had ever seen. Their animals were in good body condition as always. Mario is the community president and is a pleasure to work with each trip.

Our next farm for the day was back down the small and windy road to the home of Andreas Idme and his wife. LaUnion has several Idme families. They have alpacas, sheep, and cattle and not so friendly dogs (doing their guard jobs well). Again the animals are well treated and so easy to handle. The Idmes set an new record with 100% of their animals pregnant (16 of 16). Most of the farmers we work with have small herds of 20 to 40 animals with one community herd having 150 animals. These small herds are very different from Commercial farms but need help to improve their production and standard of living. We strive to create simple solutions which can be implemented simply.

Overall in Pucara and Lampa we examined 170 female alpacas and 126 were pregnant (74%). That is certainly good. Dr. Gerardo Diaz will be lending out our superior breeding males later this week. We have one more event here, a hands on breeding male selection seminar with several members of the breeding communities here. A report will be coming soon but the internet has been a bit sketchy recently. Thanks for reading and please consider financial support for this important work.

Learn more about Nuñoa Project here.