Alpaca Cher (Scheherazade)
"Cher" was the first cria ever born on our alpaca farm. She came in the middle of the night, in a snowstorm that dumped a couple of feet of snow on the ground and the temperature in the barn that morning was 17 degrees. We found her cushed next to her dam, Lanark's Latte at around 5:30 a.m. Her, 1st time, dam was confused about what had happened and not sure that she wanted to nurse Cher so we bottle fed Cher while we worked hard to "convince" the dam to take Cher back and nurse her.
If you have a new dam who doesn't want to nurse her cria, don't give up! Bottle feed if you have to, but get the dam to take the cria back. You don't want to bottle feed a cria for months! We picked the name (of the narrator of 1001 Arabian Nights) as a testament to Scheherazade's ability to stay alive.
Here is Cher, curious about the heater hanging on her stall.
Cher was always the biggest STAR at our farm. Everyone who saw her loved her. She enjoyed being adored by all of our visitors, but especially liked the children. Here she is with some of her many pint-sized admirers.
Cher won many first place ribbons and even beat a couple of high priced, National Show blue ribbon winners in one show. That made their owners pretty mad. Cher also starred in the National Geographic Channel's segment on Alpacas filmed right here at the Mount Airy Alpaca Company. Here is Cher with National Geographic Channel host, Peter Standring:
Cher posing with admirer at the Frederick County Farm Tour
Despite her beauty, fame and showring ribbons galore, Cher was bred 4 times and never produced a live cria. Her first two pregnancies were re-absorbed and her second two resulted in still births. Cher was retired from breeding. I include this information to remind any would-be alpaca breeders that the showring can't measure fertility! Cher's dam, Lanark's Latte, produced many fertile female cria after Cher, and Cher's sire, El Cid also produced many fertile offspring.
It could be that these two alpacas shared more genetic material than is optimal, it could be that Cher's dam ate something poisonous while pregnant with Cher, or it could be something else. As with people, the causes of infertility are often not known.
Click Photo Below to buy our Alpaca Care DVD