Who can resist from the cuteness of Llama? I believe none of you. Even though most of us just watch it on the screen or image, but their unique appearance is barely forgetting. With this unique character you may wonder, what do Llamas eat. Here we go the explanations.
What is Llama?
Before we go any further, let us discuss what is Llama. For you who did not know, Llama is still part the family of Camelid (with the scientific name is Lama glama), which also encompasses camel, vicuna, alpaca, and guanaco.
In the past, Llama was found around South Africa, specifically in the Andes Mountains. It was domesticated and farmed since very long time ago to be taken the wool, milk, and meat, not to mention sometimes was used as a pack animal.
As Pack Animal
Llama has a sturdy body shape that is similar to the typical camel in general but without any humps on the back. With slender limb, rounded muzzle, and long neck, Llama has a perfect character to be pack animal to support human transportation.
Native people around the Andes Mountains used to have Llama as a pack animal for nearly centuries. They can hold backloads for approximately 50 to 75 pounds and still able to walk up to 20 miles in a day.
Nevertheless, do not you dare to put too much burden at their back. The llama will just avoid getting up and moving; only lying on the floor with spitting, hissing, and sometimes kicking the owner until there is no more too heavy burden.
Dietary and Eating Habit
The grass is the answer to what do Llamas eat. Their eating method is quite similar to a cow. The llama will spew the meal and then masticate it as cud. They chew on such clods for few minutes before swallowing it for the completely complete digestion.
As long as there are many kinds of plants, Llama can survive their life even though there is not enough water available. This habit makes Llama becomes so reliable and durable even in tough areas like sparse mountainous terrains.
If you want to take Llama as a field pet, you can feed this herbivore with mountain vegetation like lichens, low shrubs, and typical grass. On the other hand, it is still possible to give those sheep or goat’s foods.
Relationship with Human
Llama’s contribution for transporting human communities wherever it lives is not a joke. It’s not only that. Currently, many people take Llama to be domesticated for its highly valuable commodity. People can get advantages from Llama through milk, meat, and wool.
Every two years, Llama can be sheared and it results for roughly 3 kg or 6 lbs. Its skin can be used as leather material for any handcrafted souvenirs and the wool is perfect for rugs, ropes, and fabrics. Llama’s dirt is also beneficial for fuel after has been dried and burned
If you tend to have sheep, hens, and goats, you still can domesticate Llama as your guardian for your farm. Thank its strength, Llama is a powerful creature to be used as an offender of beasts or any other predators.
Llama is a socially attractive animal. In the wildlife, they live in a small flock of about 20 Llamas. This flock usually consists of a male and few females with their young or babies.
The male has a responsibility to protect the others and territory from the threat of other males. Its action to dispel the threat is usually through chest ramming, biting, and neck wrestling.
In term of facing predators, both male and female, are very aggressive. It is a common thing if they use various strategies like kicking, charging, spitting, and biting. To warn the flock, they will call them with very noisy sound every time predators approaching.
Talking about reproduction, llama does not have an estrus cycle. Every late summer or early autumn, it tends to mate. Moreover, every breeding season, a harem consisted of roughly six females is developed by the male.
It will be extremely aggressive whenever it sees there is another male that tries to approach the harem.
After Llama reaches 2 to 3 years old, both male and female will be sexually ready and mature for mating. Also, the gestation or pregnancy period is around 10 to 12 months long depending on the specific condition.
Usually, female Llama only produces a descendant in her whole life. This descendant is often called a cria. An hour after cria’s birth, it directly can run. Few moments after that, it will be a fully independent creature.
Scientists call all this reproduction cycle of Llama as polygyny.
That is the brief explanation and detail information regarding the adorable big animal: Llama. From what do Llamas eat until how they do reproduction has been explained. If you are interested to take Llama as a field pet, make sure you are capable enough to take care of it.