I don’t know what’s got into our llamas recently. Well… perhaps I can make an educated guess. Youth, spring and hormones – not necessarily in that order. It’s been a long time since our previous boys were young and of course, George was a year older than Monty. I think about the time that Monty’s hormones were taking effect, we had George snipped and then we had Monty done the following year, so they never really peaked at the same time. This time round Baxter and Madison are the same age and boy… do we know it.
They arrived as quiet as lambs exactly two months ago. Since then we’ve got them used to the field shelter and our resident pig. We’ve done a lot of halter training and brushing and we tried walking them round the fields, which didn’t go down so well. I think they were bored being exercised where they are used to grazing, but once we took them out of the fields, they really perked up. We are fortunate that our neighbours allow us to walk over their land, some one thousand acres in all. We’ve only covered ten so far, but both the boys step out nicely and love exploring new horizons. They can get jumpy, which is only understandable, but they are both small enough for us to handle. Llamas aren’t like horses and are more inclined to leap in all directions like deer. Thankfully we have only had a couple of episodes and they will no doubt improve with time.
For the moment though, they are busy exercising themselves. Their favourite game is tearing down the field taking it in turns to nip at the other’s hind legs. If they get too close, then one will drop to the ground with their legs tucked well out of the way. The other one will then pile on top and a wrestling match ensues. They use their long necks in an effort to pin the opponent to the ground. In the image below, Madison has clearly got the advantage over Baxter, whose head and neck have completely disappeared from view.
Does my bum look big in this?
The image featured at the top was taken at the same time and shows another of their moves. There seems to be some mutual agreement where they will canter towards one another, leap off the ground at the last moment and bang their chests together. I will be honest and say that I found it quite alarming at first, but they are evenly matched and nobody has come to any harm so far and we couldn’t actually stop them, even if we tried.
So rather than stand around worrying about them, I decided to join in and photograph the action when I can. We have only just started summer and I have already agreed with our vet that they shouldn’t be gelded until the autumn of next year. So that’s another fifteen months of blood curdling grunts, screams and all in wrestling. Watch this space…