2nd DEC – Practical Alpaca Nutrition
“Practical Alpaca Nutrition.”
Jane Vaughan ~ CriaGenesis, Australia
Jane Vaughan has been working with alpacas and llamas since 1991. Jane graduated with a Bachelor of Veterinary Science (Honours) from the University of Melbourne in 1988, gained membership to the Australian and New Zealand College of Veterinary Scientists in the Ruminant Nutrition Chapter in 1998 and completed a Doctor of Philosophy in the control of alpaca ovarian function in 2002. Jane performs commercial embryo collection and transfer in alpacas throughout Australia and camels in the UAE. She also provides nutritional and parasitological advice to alpaca breeders in Australia.
Different classes of livestock have different physiological needs and it is useful to have some rules-of-thumb to assist feeding your herd. You must first satisfy the water, energy, protein and fibre needs or your herd, before worrying about vitamin and mineral supplementation. Nevertheless, alpacas and llamas are susceptible to vitamin D deficiency. Growing animals (< 3 years old) and females due to give birth in winter require supplementation with vitamin D in autumn, winter and spring. Alpacas are often farmed on selenium-deficient soils, but not all selenium supplements are suitable for use in camelids and will be discussed.