My daughter and I recently took a tour of the LunaSea Alpaca Farm with the owner King, where we were able to feed, pet and play with the beautiful animals.
Located just north of Orlando, off the Florida Turnpike, tours are by reservation only. Tours are normally scheduled four times per day (11am, 12:30pm, 2:00pm and 3:30pm). To schedule your day and time, call 352-223-9459. The website suggests a small donation of $10 per person.
Our tour began with the male alpacas. We were told not to touch the animals on the head as they see that as a threat (who knew!). We were encouraged to pet their necks and backs.
We learned alpacas don't have top teeth (only bottom teeth), which made feeding very easy. The alpacas normally eat grass (vegetarian diet) but are also fed pellets by farm guests.
We then moved over to the pin with the mamas and babies.
The females were a little more curious, especially when they realized we had snacks on hand!
Like women with chocolate, they want it all! I never felt afraid of the gentle animals.
Going into the day I did not know much about alpacas so I asked lots of questions! Here are a few things I learned:
- Alpacas have temperaments similar to cats. They are very curious; some are friendlier than others, and when the get bored they just walk away and do there own thing.
- Alpacas are related to the camel and llama.
- Alpacas have soft-bottomed feet and weight about 150 pounds.
- No, you cannot ride an alpaca. An alpaca’s bone structure is not designed for heavy loads.
- A male will orgle while breeding (sing a song); and a female's gestation periods is about 11 months long.
Speaking of babies, on our visit there were three. (This is a good time to mention that baby alpacas are called “cria”). A cria weighs about 15 pounds. The owner showed us how to hold this sweet baby boy for a picture.
This was one of the best things I had done in a long time! So relaxing and so informative. Do yourself a favor and head to LunaSea Alpaca Farm soon. The farm is located at 18810 Lone Dove Ln in Clermont, Florida.