2016-09-22 / Neighbors

Celebrate Alpaca Open Farms Day in Biddeford



Above, Rosie lets this cria, or baby alpaca, nurse at East Coast Alpacas last Tuesday, Sept. 13. The cria doesn’t have an official name yet, but is nicknamed Brownie. According to the Worrells, there are 22 color classifications of alpacas. Right, Melissa Worrell said Sebago, pictured, is an ideal alpaca for many reasons, including his friendly personality. The Worrells said Sebago makes a great alpaca ambassador and will be available to meet visitors to the farm Saturday and Sunday. (Molly Lovell-Keely photos) Above, Rosie lets this cria, or baby alpaca, nurse at East Coast Alpacas last Tuesday, Sept. 13. The cria doesn’t have an official name yet, but is nicknamed Brownie. According to the Worrells, there are 22 color classifications of alpacas. Right, Melissa Worrell said Sebago, pictured, is an ideal alpaca for many reasons, including his friendly personality. The Worrells said Sebago makes a great alpaca ambassador and will be available to meet visitors to the farm Saturday and Sunday. (Molly Lovell-Keely photos)

Left, alpaca fiber is shorn from the animal once a year and can be light or heavy in weight, durable and silky. While it’s similar to the wool of a sheep, it doesn’t make the wearer itch and it doesn’t have lanolin, which makes it hpyoallergenic. Marc Worrell said in winter, his alpacas could have inches of snow piled up on their backs, but their fiber would be dry. The shorn fiber, pictured here, is from Sebago. Left, alpaca fiber is shorn from the animal once a year and can be light or heavy in weight, durable and silky. While it’s similar to the wool of a sheep, it doesn’t make the wearer itch and it doesn’t have lanolin, which makes it hpyoallergenic. Marc Worrell said in winter, his alpacas could have inches of snow piled up on their backs, but their fiber would be dry. The shorn fiber, pictured here, is from Sebago.



Top, Marc Worrell demonstrates how docile alpacas can be by kissing one on the nose. Before establishing East Coast Alpacas, the Worrells looked into buying apartment buildings. “Before we even got down that road it became very dreadful,” Melissa Worrell said. “At the same time there was an advertisement at Marc’s work for alpacas that were up for sale. We talked it over and began investigating and the more we learned, the more delightful it seemed. So we decided we would rather get into the alpaca business than owning an apartment building.” Right, Bella Worrell is as comfortable with the alpacas as if they were cats or dogs. Top, Marc Worrell demonstrates how docile alpacas can be by kissing one on the nose. Before establishing East Coast Alpacas, the Worrells looked into buying apartment buildings. “Before we even got down that road it became very dreadful,” Melissa Worrell said. “At the same time there was an advertisement at Marc’s work for alpacas that were up for sale. We talked it over and began investigating and the more we learned, the more delightful it seemed. So we decided we would rather get into the alpaca business than owning an apartment building.” Right, Bella Worrell is as comfortable with the alpacas as if they were cats or dogs.

Two male alpacas shown here were being kept in an indoor pen, away from the females, because the Worrells said alpacas will breed any time of the year. The couple has also learned a special trick when it comes to determining if an alpaca is pregnant. On the seventh day after breeding, they bring the male and female into the breeding pen. “If the female cushes and wants to breed then the prior breeding didn't take. If she runs away, kicks and ultimately spits at the male, then she is reading as being pregnant. We do this again at day 14 and 21 to continue to confirm pregnancy is still viable.” (Molly Lovell-Keely photos) Two male alpacas shown here were being kept in an indoor pen, away from the females, because the Worrells said alpacas will breed any time of the year. The couple has also learned a special trick when it comes to determining if an alpaca is pregnant. On the seventh day after breeding, they bring the male and female into the breeding pen. “If the female cushes and wants to breed then the prior breeding didn't take. If she runs away, kicks and ultimately spits at the male, then she is reading as being pregnant. We do this again at day 14 and 21 to continue to confirm pregnancy is still viable.” (Molly Lovell-Keely photos)

Return to top