How much does an alpaca cost ?
First of all, it is important to know that buying an alpaca is not a spur of the moment decision. It is a living being. Just like dogs or cats, alpacas are not toys that you keep for a while and then get rid of when you don't want them anymore. More than a purchase, it is a long-term commitment.
The life of the alpacas
First of all you have to be able to answer the famous question of why? What are your objectives? leisure? wool work? breeding? The alpaca is a herd animal so it can't live alone, you will need at least two alpacas to start building an ideal living space for the alpacas. In order to avoid being quickly overpopulated with alpacas, it is advisable to separate the males and females. It is important to know that the life expectancy of an alpaca is about 20 years, so it is a commitment that must be respected throughout its life.
The cost of an alpaca will not be the same if you choose an alpaca for leisure, for breeding or for its wool. There are many criteria that define the price of an alpaca.
The criteria of the cost of an alpaca
You have to be careful about the scams you can find. You have to pay attention to the guarantees that the seller brings you. For example, he must have a solid knowledge and a good veterinary follow-up of his alpaca(s). He must respect the law and above all have very strict ethics. This means that a breeder who claims to be "ethical" will refuse to sell you an alpaca that will not have at least one congener of the same sex and he will also oppose the mixing of the two sexes which can be harmful for the animals. Among the most important criteria that determine the price of an alpaca are
- The sex
- The age
- The quality of its fiber
- The quality of its offspring
- If the animal has won competitions
- If it is a pregnant female or not (pregnant females are known to have the best fleece)
It is therefore very important to set your own criteria and objectives before buying an alpaca.
The cost of an alpaca
You may have already noticed that there are alpacas at all prices, there are many people who put alpacas on sale because they are "rare" animals. It is better for a first purchase to approach a breeder of confidence impassioned by the alpacas which will be able to advise you and bring you the assistance which you will need. Beware of very low prices which often hide a poor quality of life of the animal and therefore a poor quality of wool or even worse a disease. As we said before the price will be different depending on the sex. A good breeder will not sell you an animal under 1000€-1500€ HT for a male alpaca and between 2500€ and 3000€ HT for a female. The price of the female will be more or less high depending on her gestation and her offspring. The gestation period for a female alpaca is 11 months.
It is important to be aware that the purchase of an alpaca is only the beginning of the expenses, you have to take into account the expenses related to the food, the land necessary to accommodate the animals, the maintenance, the material necessary for the maintenance, the installations, the management costs, the work that it implies .... The alpaca is a beautiful animal and it is a living being, so it is important to think about the costs, the consequences and all that is involved in the commitment to an alpaca.
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