Does anyone know anything about how to raise alpacas?
I was wondering what the start up cost would be to raise alpacas and what kind of profit can be received from them after clipping their coats? How many alpacas would you need to start a viable small business?
Alpacas are wonderful animals and I love it when they hum. Alpacas need a cool environment and do not do well in hot environments. Their fibre prices depend on how fine their fibre is and can range anywhere from $1.00/lb to $500.00/lb. The finer and silkier the better. You generally start off with a pregnant female from good stock, however they can be quite pricey and sell for a few thousand dollars each (you are purchasing the unborn baby as well). The fibre is generally sent to a plant in New Mexico where it is processed and sent back to you. From there you find a buyer. They are not hard animals to raise. For start up costs you are looking at close to $10k to $15k. This is for shelter, fencing, the proper food, tools to brush them and clip their nails, good clippers and an excellent vet that knows about them. Good luck! They are a blast to raise.
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