If you are new to Alpacas, they are not dangerous, they don’t stink and don’t challenge fences, making them a perfect addition to a small farm/ranch or homestead. In fact, one of my recent customers who grew up with horses and cattle has purchased ten Alpacas. He said, they are so easy to care for, I feel like I’m getting away with something. Yes, Alpacas are designated as livestock by the federal government so your land may qualify for an Agricultural tax exemption.
Be sure to look up Section 179. With the passage of The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, the deduction limit for Section 179 is increased to $1,000,000 for 2018. The limit on capital purchases is now $2.5 million. Additionally, the bonus depreciation is 100% and is made retroactive to 9/27/2017 and good through 2022.
Here in The Great State of Colorado we can run 5 to 6 Alpacas per acre sustainably. Alpacas are characteristically “browsers” rather than “grazers”, making them the most well-suited livestock to Colorado’s altitude, semi-arid climate and natural forage. We breed them for their fine fiber, comparable to cashmere, which is of course, a renewable resource that does not require the slaughter of the animal to harvest.
Alpaca poo is also an excellent resource. Alpacas are modified ruminants with a very efficient three-chambered digestion system, the end result are compact “beans” that can be easily mixed directly into your spent garden soil, no composting required. And unlike other livestock that just poo anywhere and everywhere, Alpacas poo in a communal area, making cleanup much easier and cutting way down on the potential spread of harmful parasites.
With atmospheric carbon dioxide now over 405 ppm for the first time in over 800,000 years, we here in these United States must seriously consider how our lifestyles affect our collective environment. Previously, it was thought that only our forests and oceans absorbed excess atmospheric CO2. Now, it is known that healthy soils, rich in microorganisms, help convert CO2 and bind it to minerals. Here in Colorado, our soils are notoriously poor, rocky and full of clay. By placing down a layer of Alpaca manure in your pastures each fall, you can increase your topsoil by a half inch each year. After a few years, not only will your pastures be so much more productive, the dramatic increase in beneficial microorganisms found in your fresh soil will help your new Alpaca lifestyle along towards achieving a carbon neutral status.
Alpacas are relatively human-sized (120 to 170lbs for females, 150 to 200lbs for males), making them easy to manage. Alpacas will require a shelter to get out of bad weather, a simple three-sided lean-to is often sufficient. Alpacas must be shorn once each year (we can help with that) and have their toenails trimmed once or twice per year. We also administer a de-wormer in the spring and then again in the fall.
With nearly 15 years’ experience with Alpacas, we can help you to get started and answer all your questions. My father and partner in the Alpaca business had to retire last year due to health reasons. I cannot handle our 70 Alpacas all by myself, so many will be sold at steep discounts, some as much as 50% to 60% off!
Alpacas are herd animals and therefore do best in groups of three or more, so our starter packages all consist of a minimum of three Alpacas. Some new owners choose to start off with three boys, which is the least expensive option. This way gives you an opportunity to give Alpacas a try with the least amount of financial and time commitments.
For example, we have a package of three nice boys featured in one of the attached photos that have been in the same pasture/paddock since they were little. They are trained to come over to the fence to get sprayed by the garden hose in the summer and to eat a grain supplement out of dog food bowls. Previously priced at $1000, we are now offering them at a 50% discounted price, $500 for all three boys.
The next step up, we have another package of three different boys for sale, boys that almost made it as herdsires. These boys would be worth breeding, if you wanted to increase your Alpaca herd numbers with the purchase of a few females in the future. Also featured in one of the attached photos, these boys were priced at $2,500 and are now being offered at a 40% discount, just $1,500 for all three.
When we purchased our first Alpacas in 2004, we elected to start with three girls. We purchased them while still working our day jobs and living in apartments in the city. We boarded them with a local breeder and bred them each year so by the time our ranch location was chosen and our homestead was all set up, we had a herd of 12 with young ones to sell.
We have a number of all-female package options available, priced from $2,000 up to $5,000. A middle-aged, proven breeding female should go for about $3,000, with a 50% discount, that’s $1,500. So to keep the price down and still offer a group of three females, we have included a proven breeder along with a retired mom and a non-breeding female. The breeding-age female will come to you already bred for a $2,000 cash sale or $500 down and $265 per month for 6 months.
However, if you decide to get started with babies from the beginning, we like to recommend having at least two bred females. Having at least two Alpaca babies is important because it gives each of them someone else to play with. Not only is it fun to watch, it’s important for their development, both physically and socially. A package of two bred females and a retired mom for instance, with 50% discount included, will run you in the neighborhood of $3,500. With $700 down, we would accept payments of $250 each month for 12 months.
Three bred females, with 50% discount included will cost in the $5,000 range. With $1000 due at signing, we would also accept payments of $350 each month for 12 months.
Free delivery on all Alpaca packages sold within 100 miles of Elizabeth, Colorado, $1.50 per loaded mile thereafter. Located 37 miles S/E of Denver, 47 miles N/E of Colorado Springs, due east of Castle Rock.
Thank you for looking.