Owl Ridge Alpacas

Family - - Fiber - - Fun!



Alpaca Raffle Winner

And the winners of the Alpaca Raffle - are... Jason & Stephanie Westervelt! Ravat and buddy Swoosh are settling into their new digs in Alpine quite nicely.

Soon after their arrival, Ravat & Swoosh's new family had to inform their sons Daycare why Hudson was making alpaca sounds and noises! From the picture they sent - seems Hudson's thrilled with his new buddies.

Marimba Mallets - who would have thought...

A new use for alpaca yarn - you bet it is...I was recently contacted by a percussionist wanting to special order some Alpaca yarn, to be used to wrap Marimba Mallets. Never heard of this one before, but from what I'm told using the natural fiber provides a better quality of sound and holds up a lot longer - making it well worth the investment. Pretty cool to find a new use for Alpaca yarn!

Yes,It's true..we are raffling off an Alpaca!

We had to say that line numerous times this past weekend and the weekend before. You see our daughter came home one day, just about hopping out of her skin saying the "Yorkers" group at school, next trip is to Spain and she wanted to go!

And how are you/we going to pay for that - was the next question!

I had heard of other kids raffling off a side of beef and doing really well - so we thought - Why not an Alpaca!

So after much consideration - we have chosen "Rav

Having Fun @ The Fiber Mill

In a recent trip to "Autumn Mist Alpaca Farm and Fiber Mill", Brandon got first hand experience into what goes into making roving. From weighing the fleece to ensuring it was spread evenly on the conveyor. A future mill worker in the making, only time will tell.

Thanks Leslie & Jeff for letting us "hang out" with you for a bit :)

Future Rug Weaver...

For many of us, Floyd Wicker "Four Season Alpacas" is the go to guy for creating gorgeous Alpaca rugs, he weaves all of our rugs here at Owl Ridge. Check out are Sales Page to see just a few. At the 2013 Alpaca Gala, Floyd took some time to show a future weaver what it's all about...

Autograph Wall

Our good friends and neighbors Kevin & Michelle Mannella, own and operate a Bed & Breakfast - "Hayward House Bed & Breakfast." One of the coolest things they have is an "autograph wall." It's hidden away in a small room where guests can get coffee and tea - to our delight the photo was drawn on their wall. We often get guests coming over four tours and to see what an Alpaca really is. Cameron had given a tour the day before - and the guests loved it. By the looks of it - they loved their sta

Drop Spindle Spinning

We were recently invited to attend a "Learn to Spin Yarn" class at the Ovid Library. Master spinner Dale Jackson was on hand demonstrating the yarn-making process using a drop spindle. This was a
"hands on" class that turned out to be a lot of fun. It was also filled with a lot of "Shoots" and "Opps" but more laughs than anything. I can see how using a drop spindle is something that just clicks after practice and definitely something you could get a lot of enjoyment out of. For me, I'

Get out of my car!

While unloading feed one afternoon - we got a surprise to find one of our Bourbon Red Turkey Hens trying to hitch a ride. Maybe she was trying to tell us to go faster (she's standing on a bag of chicken feed), or thought she could be helpful. Honestly, my first thought was "get out of my car" as I didn't want any unwanted presents left behind.

She eventually hopped out to become a trip hazard by following us into the barn while carrying 50 lb bags of feed.

Never a dull mo

Happy Holidays!

Let's do a photo card this year...this idea somehow morphed into a photo in front of our sign with three Alpacas. Oh, it seems so simple doesn't it.

Lesson #1: Have someone (another human) take the photo - - it seems like an enternity for the timer on the camera to go off - especially when everyone is posed just right; and only an instant when no one is ready!

Lesson #2: Alpacas can sense when the timer on the "un-manned" camera is going to go off and try and leap over y

Picking up "Beans"

Hate to admit it, but there are times the bean piles get away from us. With both my husband and I working full time off the farm, two active kids, 19 Alpacas, horses, chickens, etc. we often run out of time. I know I'm not alone in this one!

Thankfully a fellow Alpaca breeder told me to try a "Shop Vac." We have a couple and thought - why not!

Turns out they work like a charm - especially when your kids think it's fun!

Couple of things to remember - don't go

Please be alive, please be alive...

It wasn't long after we brought our first Alpacas home that we saw a sight, similar to this picture - well, maybe not so many in one shot. Out of the house we would run to check and make sure they were alive. Happily - as soon as we got close, up they would pop. "Dead Alpacas" is the term we coined from that day on. Truth be told, they are soaking up the sun - so maybe we should change it to "Lazy Alpacas" - that's probably a little more politically correct anyway.

Two Places at Once

Have you ever found yourself needing to be in two places at once - and wondering how you were going to pull it off? We were faced with that dilemma this past weekend when Owl Ridge Alpacas was booked to be at both the "Interlaken Historical Society County Fair and Plowing Day" in Interlaken, NY and at the "Alpaca Gala" located in PennYann, NY - on opposite sides of Seneca Lake - - and both wanting live Alpacas present!

Divide and conquer was the answer - but how with only one trailer

Stop the car...

No way, it couldn't be - - yup it was, a fiberglass Alpaca.

You think you've seen it all - - and then you stumble on a road-side tourist trap and what do you see? A larger than life Alpaca!

It was so awesome, that I couldn't pass up the picture opportunity. And to think, we just wanted ice cream!

I must say, I enjoy the live version much better - but then again poop patrol would be so much easier...

Good-bye My Friend

It's with great sadness and with many tears that we pass along the loss of one of our family today. Sierra, was with us for 12 years - an extremely long life for a Saint Bernard - but one that filled our life to the fullest. In human years she was over 80. We saw the signs - slowing down, couldn't hear a dang thing, and started preparing mentally - but you never are really prepared are you. It's amazing what joys, frustration, sometimes anger that an animal can bring into your life - but so

Alpacas with Flags!

Growing up in Wisconsin, it wasn't uncommon to drive by farms that had flags on their silos. Legend (if you could call it that) said this was a way to indicate that their silo was bought and paid for. A google search indicated the same, as well as a way for farmers to show their patriotism.

Here at Owl Ridge Alpacas we are starting a new tradition - - Alpacas with Flags! Of course it's not as permanent as painting one on a silo, but for us it has marked a milestone. We now own our

Fiber - - Family - - Fun!

I am a strong believer that when you need it the most, something happens in your life or someone steps into your life to help guide you in the right direction or confirm you are on the right path. That event happened this weekend at the "Alpaca Training Academy" sponsored by Autumn Mist Alpacas, K-Ran Alpacas and Autumn Kiss Alpacas.

I openly admit, I didn't want to go. It was a stressful week at work, I was tired and I was getting frustrated. I love all of my Alpacas, but it didn'


Freckles, some people love em, some people hate them. For me, it's a part of who I am. I've had them since I was little, and if I'm in the sun they become even more pronounced. Both of my kids have them to, and when they were little I told them they were kissed by Angels.

So, when our newest addition arrived early on July 5th, and came out with spots - it was a no brainer to name her "Owl Ridge Angel Kisses" aka Freckles.

She is the cutest alpaca that I have ever laid my

Hurry up an wait...

"Hurry up and wait" I hear this all the time in the government. I think the same theme holds true with Alpacas. You research, plan and finally determine who you're going to breed your female Alpaca to, hurry up to get them to your sire of choice, timing for the month you desire and then you wait. And you wait.

And finally as her due day grows closer you wait some more - watching for all of the signs, trying to figure out if this is the day or not. You try not to get sucked into t

350 bales of hay in the loft, 350 bales of hay...

Most of the time, when hay needs to be unloaded it's the hottest day of the year. This year, the heat wasn't so bad - but the timing was awful. After being at the Ovid Strawberry Festival for most of the day (7:00 - 4:00pm) we arrived home to find hay wagons filled to the top, and of course the farmer needed his wagons back ASAP to get his own crop in. Thank goodness, we invested wisely this spring and purchased a hay elevator, if not I wouldn't be typing this blog, as we'd still be thowing h

Are you that farm...

As we were setting up our display for the Ovid Strawberry Fesitval, a gentleman came up and asked...Are you that farm... and before he could finished, I jumped in and said "No - we are in Interlaken" as many people in the area confuse us with another alpaca farm not to far away. To my utter amazement (and delight) he said, "Yeah, that's the one I was thinking of - I know exactly where you are!"

To a new farm (only two years old) that was music to our ears - finally someone knows who

No that's not a Llama, it's an Alpaca...

If you own Alpacas, you have been asked this question numerous times - - Is that a Llama? So many times that you can almost sense when it's going to be asked and have to prepare yourself to answer polietly. When I worked summer jobs in the National Forests out west, we were always asked "When do the deer turn into Elk" or the best "Do you Rangers have to climb the mountain and paint it white in the summer!" (I kid you not).

So, I suppose I was prepared for the envitable Alpaca vs.

Storm does it again!

To our joy and amazement, "Owl Rige Lightening Storm" took 2nd at the 2012 AOBA National Show - Handcrafters Spinoff Competition! Just received the judges scorecard and ribbon in the mail this afternoon. I still think I'm floating on a cloud. It was on a whim that I even entered, decided at the last minute to give it a try - I'm sure glad that I did.

Judges comments included: "A Beautiful, well nourished fleece with a soft hand. The staple length is not long enough to be recommen

Shearing Day Has Arrived!

Finally, it's time to shear. I'm amazed at how proud our Alpacas walk into the barn and walk out almost wondering where half their body went. That look quickly disappears when they discover a great dirt hole and finally get to roll and scratch their backs!

This was the second time shearing at Owl Ridge and I have to say it went pretty smooth. Our good friend Phyl came back to help out again (for those of you that go thru shearing it's a true sign of a good friend when they come bac

"Owl Ridge Storm" takes Second!

It was an incredible weekend at the Northeast Alpaca Expo in Syracuse, NY. Our 13 year old daughter Cameron showed one of our Alpacas Storm and ended up taking 2nd place. We are of course proud of Storm, but even more so of Cameron. The grin on her face was priceless, and her Dad and I were beaming with pride.

This is the reason we started Owl Ridge Alpacas, we wanted to have a family friendly business that we could all enjoy. The whole point is to have fun, winning was icing on