Alpaca

Alpaca is a domesticated animal that is tended in the western countries of South America [8]. In Peru, they mostly graze in the southern sierra parts of the country. These animals are a part of the camelid family, and although they look like llamas, there are a few differences between the too [8]. Alpaca are smaller and stockier than llamas, and has wider and smaller ears too [2]. The people of Peru use these gentle, observant animals in order to make articles of clothing and blankets from their world-renown wool [8]. Alpaca wool is some of the finest wool on earth. Alpaca fleece is a light-weight, lustrous and silky natural fiber. It is also soft and luxurious. In physical structure, alpaca fiber is somewhat akin to hair, being very glossy, but its softness and fineness enable the spinner to produce satisfactory yarn with comparative ease [8].Even though the wool of alpaca is much finer and softer, it is more expensive than wool of a llama [2]. Prices can range from 100$ U.S. to 550,000$ U.S. [3]. Another difference between the llama and the alpaca is that the poeple of Peru use the llama as a pack animal in the Andes, where as the alpaca is too small to carry heavy loads at far distances [2]. Since there are many animals in South America that like to prey on alpaca, they tend to be cautious, vigilant, and observant of their surroundings [8]. When an unfamiliar person or other animal comes near them, they become frightened and either run away or alert the herd and fight back[3]. Alpaca usually live in herds in order to protect one another [2]. Every day the people of Peru care for these graceful animals. They strive to keep and maintain one of the world known culture pieces of Peru, the alpaca.

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