Alpaca fiber is hypoallergenic, flame resistant, and water resistant. Alpacas are modified ruminants, meaning they have three stomachs, where regular ruminants have four stomachs. Although similar to llamas, alpacas are smaller, with a shorter, blunter face. Alpacas and llamas can cross breed which results in offspring called huarizo. Alpacas have a wide range of 22 different coloring that ranges from a true, blue-black to browns, tans, and whites. There are no "wild" populations of alpacas. However, wild vicuñas, ancestors of alpacas, live in a wide range of habitats, from the high and dry Atacama Desert in northern Chile to the wet and stormy Tierra del Fuego at the southern tip of the continent. It wasn't until the 1980s alpacas were exported to other countries for farming purposes.
Click HERE for an Alpaca Activity Sheet!
Our Current Residents
Trotter, Male - Born July 30, 2015
Trotter is a black and white alpaca and came to ZooMontana in 2018. He sometimes has his ears pressed back against his head as he's much more anxious than Kramer and relies on him for social support.
Kramer, Male - Born September 19, 2015
Kramer is an all brown alpaca who also came to ZooMontana in 2018. Both he and Trotter were donated after being retired from the show circuit. They both enjoy being goofy in the barn pasture, often sparring with one another.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Chordata
- Class: Mammalia
- Order: Artiodactyla
- Family: Camelidae
- Genus: Vicugna
- Species: V. pacos
- Herbivore: eat mostly grass, but includes leaves, wood, bark, or stems
- Population: stable
- Habitat: Mountain
- Diurnal: active during the day