On Watch


Joined March 2009

  • Artist
  • Artwork Comments 5

Artist's Description

Alpaca on guard duty in the Torquay area. Not sure what others may think of DOF here, but I like it.

“Alpacas are one of four members of the South American
camelid species. Like all camelids they are hardy, intelligent
and gregarious animals that have evolved with strong herd
social instincts. Both females and males are very protective
of each other and especially of their young. The alpaca is
generally very alert to any animal or person approaching its
paddock, and has excellent eyesight over kilometre distances.
While normally almost soundless, the alpaca can emit a
piercing alarm scream when aroused to potential danger,
alerting their herd and property owners.
Alpacas are normally gentle toward humans and other animals that are not seen as threatening but they have an innate dislike for canines and foxes. Their defence against such predators is to chase them away or pursue them and if necessary stamp at or on the predator with their front feet, rising off the ground onto their back legs if necessary before bringing their front legs down with considerable speed and force. Alpacas, when provoked in such a fashion, are very fast and will catch the predator in a short distance. There is also evidence that alpacas may deter attacks from eagles.
The instinct for one or two alpacas to bond with other grazing
animal herds, and especially their proven ability to protect
sheep and goats, has resulted in the growing use of wethered
adult male alpacas as sheep flock guardians – especially during and after lambing and kidding. Cases have been recorded in Australia of wethers bravely standing in front of females and progeny in the corner of a paddock fending off multiple animal attacks. In some cases a guardian has been killed by dogs while at least some of his flock survived.”
Australian Alpaca Association Ltd.

Artwork Comments

  • Lisa Kenny
  • grumpy
  • AlMiller
  • CeePhotoArt
  • annibels
desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait
desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait

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