Cardinal Creek Farm History and Alpaca History

Maremma Sheepdog       Great Pyrenees              Poodle

CCF History:

CCF was established  in 2008 with a purchase of 2 Huacaya female alpacas; today the CCF herd consist of about 30 alpacas at any one time.  CCF has color variety, fine fleeced alpacas and alpacas with a friendly attitude.  The alpaca farm was started as a business on a small acreage to utilize the entire area and to have a variety of opportunities to grow into some of the special areas that the alpaca livestock business has to offer; barns and fencing were added to accommodate these wonderful animals.   We are pleased that this business is environmentally friendly.

Our animal family today consists of alpacas, 2 guardian dogs and one therapy dog. Our alpacas are all Huacaya except two Suri alpacas, one male and one female.  Our guardian dogs include one Great Pyrenees and one Maremma Sheepdog.  Our therapy dog is a tea-cup Poodle, that loves to go on her work projects. 

After discovering how wonderful alpacas could be, we discovered that the alpaca fiber could also be wonderful. We have a variety of yarns and products made from our yarn and fiber.  Our handmade clothing consists of hats, scarves, wraps, fingerless gloves and more.  We add new items on an on-going basis.  Products are also available for children and home.  Our rugs are made by crafters who still practice techniques passed down through the ages.  Check out our Farm Store or make a personal visit to our store site.  Store hours are by appointment. Our fiber is sheared once every year.  We sort by fiber grade and utilize everything fiber.  We work with several specialty mills here in the US to process our fleece into yarns, rugs, and fiber products such as felt or roving.  We make sample fleece blends and from there decide what blends to have the mill make into yarn that will add beauty and enhance the natural colors. 

CCF recently purchased an additional farm.  We are in the process of improving the pasture and planning to grow our own hay as well as have additional space that will accommodate any growth we may want in the future.   

Alpacas History and US Alpaca Growth:

Alpacas are a member of the Camelid family.  The camelid family consists of Camels, Llamas and Alpacas.  Alpacas are the smallest of the camelid family; they are smart, inaquisitive and easy to care for.  They are efficient animals and require less room and less food than other livestock.  Alpacas can be seen in two different breed types.  The breed types are the Huacaya (wah-ki-ah) with the appearance of teddy bear like fleece and the Suri (soo-ree) with a silky drape like fleece with the appearance of draping-locks.

It is believed that alpacas first appeared on the earth over 30 million years ago and were domesticated more than 5,000 years ago.  They were found in the South American Andes (Peru, Bolivia and Chile) by the Spanish centuries ago where the local peoples  were processing the luxurious fleece.  Because the fleece is so fine and luxurious it has been used as currency by previous societies and in some cases clothing made from the fiber was only worn by royalty.  

Alpacas were imported into the US beginning in 1980, and the US alpaca owners and breeders formed an association in 1987, today the organization is known as the Alpaca Owners Association (AOA).  The AOA national show is held in different State locations each year.  Many affiliate organizations are available across the US.  The local affiliates offer local shows, education, and interest that can be shared.  The Alpaca Registry Inc. (ARI) began registering alpacas in 1986 with 608 registered that year, at last check there have been over 200,000 registered.  Members of the AOA and ARI voted to merge the two organizations.  The current AOA office is in Nebraska. There are approximately 10,000 alpaca farms across the United States today.