Greetings and welcome to my blog, I am currently redesigning the site so some of my pictures are unfortunately missing because I had to close my sellers account that I had with the Smugmug site because as a free lance photographer I just couldn't afford it.
Once again I apologize for the bareness of my blog and will be working on it continually until I get it restored.
Thank you for your patience! -Megan

Monday, August 27, 2012

Our Guard Llama Photos

Greetings Bloggers, It’s been a few days at least since my last post sorry for the delay. These photos are of the Llama that used to guard our herds of Boer goats in our pasture in western Texas. I have added several new photos to my Animals and wildlife gallery, I have also added an entirely new gallery of Photos that I took at the Hot Air Balloon Festival at White Sands National Monument , right outside Alamogordo, New mexico.  Please visit my Website by Clicking Here and check out the new photos that I have added.  All of my photography is Available for sale and also for instant download for Personal or Commercial use.

Hope you enjoy the Llama photos!
Click on the photos to view them larger and to see other photos in my gallery.

Llama guarding a ranchers herd of Boer Goats in west Texas.
Llama guarding a ranchers herd of Boer Goats in west Texas. A Llama enjoying herself in a watertrough on a ranch in west Texas where she protectively guards the ranchers herd of goats. Llama guarding a ranchers herd of Boer Goats in west Texas.
The llama: (Lama glama) is a domesticated South American camelid, widely used as a meat and pack animal by Andean cultures since pre-Hispanic times.

 The height of a full-grown, full-size llama is 5.5 to 6.0 ft. tall at the top of the head, and can weigh between 280 to 450 lbs. At birth, a baby llama (called a Cria, from Spanish for "baby") is also is used for baby alpaca, vicuña, or guanaco. Crias are typically born with all the females of the herd gathering around, in an attempt to protect against the male llamas and potential predators. A Cria can weigh between 20 and 30 lbs. Llamas can live for a period of about 20–30 years depending on how well they are taken care of.

 Llamas are very social animals and live with other llamas as a herd. The wool produced by a llama is very soft and lanolin-free. Llamas are intelligent and can learn simple tasks after a few repetitions. When using a pack, llamas can carry about 25% to 30% of their body weight for 5-8 miles.

 The name llama (in the past also spelled 'lama' or 'glama') was adopted by European settlers from native Peruvians.

 Llamas appear to have originated from the central plains of North America, then migrated to South America about 3 million years ago. By the end of the ice age camelids were extinct in North America.

 As of 2007, there were over 7 million llamas and alpacas in South America and, due to importation from South America in the late 20th century, there are now over 158,000 llamas and 100,000 alpacas in the United States and Canada.

Guarding Behavior:  Using llamas as livestock guards in North America began in the early 1980s, and some Ranchers have used llamas successfully since then to watch over flocks of sheep and herds of goats. They are used most commonly in the in western regions of the United States, where larger predators, such as the coyote, are prevalent. It was once thought that a single gelding (castrated male) is was the best choice for a guardian, but the knowledge has become rather widespread that a single unbred females make better and safer guardians because they are more alert and do not pose as big of a threat to smothering smaller livestock.

 Research suggests the use of multiple guard llamas is not as effective as one. Multiple males tend to bond with one another, rather than with the livestock, and may ignore the flock. A gelded male of two years of age bonds closely with its new charges and is instinctively very effective in preventing predation. Some llamas appear to bond more quickly to sheep or goats if they are introduced just prior to lambing. Many sheep and goat producers indicate a special bond quickly develops between lambs and their guard llama and the llama is particularly protective of the lambs.

 Using llamas as guards has eliminated the losses to predators for many producers. The value of the livestock saved each year more than exceeds the purchase cost and annual maintenance of a llama. Although not every llama is suited to the job, most are a viable, nonlethal alternative for reducing predation, requiring no training and little care.

Guard llamas may defend against predators in many ways. Llamas are instinctively alert and aware of their surroundings, and may draw attention to an intruder by making a startling alarm call. They may walk or run toward an intruder, and chase, paw at, or kick it. Some llamas may herd the animals they are

guarding into a tight group or lead them away from danger and to the spot where they may feel the safest. Others may stand apart from the group and watch the intruder. Although llamas have been known to kill predators (such as coyotes), they should not be considered attack animals. They are generally effective against single intruders only, not packs. In the US, guard llamas have been most common in ranches located in western regions, where larger predators, such as the coyote, have been more prevalent. Not every llama will guard however and it should not be assumed that because it is a llama it will guard.

History of the Llama in culture:

 Pre-Incan cultures

The Moche people frequently placed llamas and llama parts in the burials of important people, as offerings or provisions for what they believed was the afterlife. The Moche culture of pre-Columbian Peru depicted llamas quite realistically in their ceramics.


Inca empire

 In the Inca empire, llamas were the only beasts of burden, and many of the peoples dominated by the Inca had long traditions of llama herding. For the Inca nobility, the llama was of symbolic significance, and llama figures were often buried with the dead. In South America, llamas are still used as beasts of burden, as well as for the production of fiber and meat. The Inca deity Urcuchillay was depicted in the form of a multicolored llama. Agriculture was also boosted by using Llama dung as fertilizer.


Spanish empire

 One of the main uses for llamas at the time of the Spanish conquest was to bring down ore from the mines in the mountains. Gregory de Bolivar estimated that in his day, as many as 300 thousand were employed in the transport of produce from the Potosí mines alone, but since the introduction of horses, mules, and donkeys, the importance of the llama as a beast of burden has greatly diminished.


According to Juan Ignacio Molina, the Dutch captain Joris van Spilbergen observed the use of chilihueques (possibly a llama type) by native Mapuches of Mocha Island as plow animals in 1614.

Fiber :  Llamas have a fine undercoat which can be used for handicrafts and garments. The coarser outer guard hair is used for rugs, wall-hangings and lead ropes. The fiber comes in many different colors ranging from white or grey to reddish-brown, brown, dark brown and black.  The fiber of their coat is one of the finest natural fibers with a Diameter of 20-30 micrometres.

Please Click Here!To visit my website and check out the new photos that I have added.  All of my photography is Available for sale for prints on anything from paper and Canvas and even metal, All photos are also available for instant download for Personal or Commercial use.


  1. I love the llama!!! =D You should put a link to Horrible Histories "Llama Farmer" infomercial :P

  2. LOL yeah that would be funny! :)

  3. It was a she, her name was Inca. Ranchers use Females more often than males now because they dont try to mate with the smaller livestock and hurt them, and research has shown they are more aware of thier surroundings. LOL

  4. wow...I like the pictures. sooooooooo...cute.... love it..
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