Pennsylvania Llama & Alpaca Association
About Llamas & Alpacas
Raising llamas and alpacas as an “alternative” livestock is a new and exciting industry in Pennsylvania (PA). Because llamas and alpacas do not require large acreage, extensive barns and fencing, or intense labor, they are an ideal livestock answer for dwindling open space and expensive labor. The demand for llamas and alpacas has remained high over the years.
The camelid family includes camels, guanacos, vicunas, llamas and alpacas. The last four of these are native to the Andes mountains in Chile, Bolivia, and Peru. Llamas were first imported into North America in the early 1970’s. Alpacas, however, were not imported until 1984. Both have adapted well to the North American climate and have become an attractive alternative to other more demanding farm enterprises. Because of advanced health and management practices of our domestic herds, the United States is producing high quality and healthy llamas and alpacas which are now being exported to other countries. Currently, llama and alpaca fiber is prized and used in the growing fiber industry. From spectacular yarns to clothing, blankets, and mattress pads that use scrap camelid fiber, the industry is healthy and growing, for breeding, selling, and fiber-related products.