Updated: Nov 13, 2018
What do alpacas do in the dark?
Many years ago, when I was first getting started with alpacas, I heard a funny sound in the pasture one night. I put my boots on over my jammies, grabbed a flashlight, and went out to the pasture to see what was afoot.
Nothing looked odd in the moonlight until I got to the last pasture. As I approached, I began to think that a herd of galloping horses must be coming over the hill, but no! Instead, I saw an entire pasture of adult females PRONKING! They pranked around and around the pasture, joyfully enjoying the cool night. I was transfixed. I stood and watched them for almost 30 minutes until one by one they slowed down, broke from the group and resumed eating. Some of them cushed (sat down with their feet tucked under them) and chewed they cud, content and peaceful.
I sat down too. The moon was bright, everything was still, and I was in a state of wonder. I almost had to pinch myself. Was this what alpaca ranching was really about? To be admitted into a sisterhood of joyful pronking in the middle of the night? All memory of raking poop and bucking hay faded in the magic of the moment.