Llamas, Alpacas and Vicunas

Since being in Peru, I’ve learned about three new animals: llamas, alpacas and vicuñas!

Alpaca-Llama-Vicuna

Here are some that we saw on the bus from Puno to Arequipa.

Animales-Peru-2014We bought some alpaca socks and some say that alpaca is better than cashmere. We’ll see about that …

In any case, here are some little known things about alpacas:

3. They grow superlative, hypoallergenic fleece
Alpaca fiber is much like sheep’s wool, but warmer and not itchy. It is lacking in lanolin, which makes it hypoallergenic and also allows it to be processed without the need for high temperatures or harsh chemicals in washing.
4. They’re flame-resistant!
Well, technically their fiber is flame-resistant, meeting the standards of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s rigid testing specifications as a Class 1 fiber for use in clothing and furnishings.
9. They share a bathroom
Alpacas use a communal dung pile (where they do not graze, thankfully). Because of their predisposition for using a dung pile, some alpacas have been successfully house-trained.
Read the other 7 here.
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