Larra had been checked at around 5am and then I went back to bed. Si woke me up again around 7am to say that nothing was happening and he was about to leave for the office. I got straight out of bed, just in case, I wasn't going to get caught out again. I looked straight out of the window at Larra and her tail was up and she looked as though she was straining but she was nowhere near the poo pile. I thought I'd make a cup of coffee and keep watching. I had had a couple of sips and nothing much was happening but there was something sticking out of her rear end and I thought I'd better go and have a closer look. I walked around to the paddock all the while watching this balloon sticking out of her. Once I was in with her she came straight towards me humming, which was really unusual for Larra, she normally acts as though she knows she is an elite alpaca and we are mere humans put here to give her pedicures and clean up the poo. There was just a head showing within this balloon with no movement at all. I thought I was going to have to cope with a stillbirth which was particularly poignant as she had given birth prematurely, at night last year in a storm and the cria had died even though our vet worked on it for almost 2 hours. Poor Larra mourned her baby for over a week. Anyway, I decided that she was obviously asking for help so I had to do something no matter how scared I felt. I burst the bag and did a bit of tweeking of the feet and they soon appeared. I was so relieved as the cria then spluttered and sneezed and more of the legs appeared. I then stood back to leave her to it.
Larra obviously thought that this would be good time to take a break after this and sat down so I decided to go and finish my coffee while she had a rest. I stared out of the window watching her and she was having such strong contractions that I could see her whole body clench. I was actually holding my breath during each one then urging her to stand up to let gravity help. It was only when Ollie told me that she couldn't hear me through the window that I realised I had been telling her to push during each contraction.
As soon as the cria had hit the ground I ran over again with a towel and teramycin but I was still shaking so much that I sprayed the grass and its front leg. Ollie had to take over and told me that I had missed the navel completely. Larra is so pleased with her new baby that she has been sniffing and kissing it all day, it has been really lovely to watch. Once again I forgot to check the sex of the cria and had to go back to lift its tail to check. Another girl. Her ears are floppy and she has no teeth yet which are pointers of a premature birth which is a bit strange as it is 347 days since Larra was mated.
I got Si to phone Rob at Wellground Alpaca Stud this evening just to check that it was ok to leave its ears because the only advice I could find on t'internet was to tie tampons to them to support them but it actually looks really cute when she runs as they bounce up and down. We have decided to call her Exhibition as Larra's first daughter we named Halo after one of our favourite bands who have now changed their name to Exhibition. Mother and baby are both doing fine but I am still in a bit of a state of shock and in serious need of a large G and T.
Note to Darling Daughter, if you want children then please adopt them.
This is a picture of Carrie that Rob requested, He wanted to see her dry.
Out of the four births we have had so far our girls have produced one boy and three girls and we would really like to keep the same ratio for the rest of the births this year.