Enterprise Alpacas
From the Past--- Into the Future

Home of Whiskey Man, a Macgyver Son

About Our Ranch....

Welcome to Enterprise Alpacas in Emmett, Idaho. My husband, Carlos, and I moved here from San Diego after many years in the city and the work-a-day world, he in construction and me in the medical field. But we were both animal lovers and nature lovers who longed to change the city for the country. I had alway wanted to find a way to combine my love of animals and make a living at the same time. We first learned about alpacas and the advantages they offered (quiet country living, ease of care, hardiness, and TAX breaks) from a friend of the family. We could hardly wait to find some property and get into "the alpaca lifestyle". The entire western US was then searched for suitable climate, property values and agricultural friendliness. We settled on beautiful Idaho, Land of Famous Potatoes. Of course, we grow more than potatoes! Our alpacas love the moderate climate of the Banana Belt in Southwestern Idaho AND we don't have to wear snowshoes in the winter. They have their beautiful pasture of green orchard grass to eat, hay in the feeder, and grain supplements in their bowls. What more could a 'paca ask for?

We enjoy their quiet presence, their beauty in the pasture, the gentle "hum" of their communication. Alpacas come in over 21 natural colors and we have some brown, some black and some white ones. The various colors are absolutely lovely to behold as they graze together or "cush" (lie down) to chew their cud, as all good ruminants do. Their demeanor is shy and gentle, the girls will eat grain right out of my hand!


Their ease of care is also appealing. They must be shorn once a year (there are shearers in most areas and several farms here in Emmett will get together and hire a shearer and do "everyone" at once). Periodic parasite control is easily done and a "pedicure" when needed. Alpacas have soft foot pads (easy on the precious Earth) and two toenail on each foot. These nails are trimmed if they are not worn down by the animal's walking. It is much like trimming a dog's nails, or your own! They use a communal dung pile (which facilitates cleanup of the "pasture pellets") so keeping a pasture clean just requires a scoop and a rake! AND it makes great fertilizer for gardens or flowers.

The other great thing about the "alpaca world" is the people. Other paca farmers are more than willing, happy even, to share their knowledge of alpacas, help when called upon and are just the nicest folks we have ever met. We all have a common love-the alpaca-and we all want the best for them. Carlos and I love going to the shows, whether it be a small regional gathering or the "Nationals", just to meet our friends that we have made during our time being paca farmers. AND we love seeing pacas, pacas, pacas at the same time.


So, do we love what we are doing? Absolutely. Would we make the same decision to "revert" to the life of our forebears? In a heartbeat. Can we entice YOU to take a look at our 'pacas? Hopefully, the answer is: In A New York Minute"!

Enterprise Alpacas is dedicated to breeding the suri alpaca. What is an alpaca? They are a cousin of the more familiar llama, quite a bit smaller, with luxurious, softer-than-cashmere fleece. We who know and love the alpaca refer to their coat as fleece or fiber. Not wool, much softer than wool and not itchy. Not hair, much finer than any other animal coat. What is the SURI alpaca? The suri fleece hangs down from their bodies in long, corkscrew shiny locks that shimmer in the light and have a cool, slick feel or hand. The other species is the huacaya whose fleece grows straight out from the body in soft, fluffy and crinkly waves.

The alpaca is grown for this fiber which is made into luxury garments prized the world over. Most of the commercial production of yarn and finished goods is done by mills in Peru. The alpaca numbers in the US are not sufficient as yet to support a textile industry here. This, then, is the goal of the US breeders: produce sufficient numbers of quality alpacas, be it suri or huacaya, to supply in quantity high-quality fleece for commercial use.


There are some farms in the States who have mini- mills who will process the "clip" produced by our alpacas into yarn or fabric, prized by hand spinners and weavers, other cottage industries and crafters. The sale of this fiber alone can pay for the feed of an alpaca.


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