Alpaca (Vicugna pacos) is a domesticated species of South American camelid. It resembles a small llama in superficial appearance. Alpacas are kept in herds that graze on the level heights of the Andes of Ecuador, southern Peru, northern Bolivia, and northern Chile at an altitude of 11,483 ft to 16,404 ft above sea-level, throughout the year.
Alpacas are considerably smaller than llamas, and unlike llamas, alpacas were not bred to be beasts of burden but were bred specifically for their fiber.
At Aberdeen Mills we have started the production of this wonderful and amazing fiber with the the help of others. Of course, we feed and tend to their every need, a local shearer has cut the fiber and we sent the fiber to a mill in Pennsylvania for processing. The final product will certainly make some very nice and warm products.
Our sheep are considered a rare breed known as "Jacob". The Jacob sheep is a breed of primitive multihorned sheep, patterned with black and white spots.
As of 2009, Jacobs are listed as threatened by the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy, which means the breed has "fewer than 1,000 annual registrations in the US and estimated fewer than 5,000 global population.
The Biblical story of Jacob in Genesis 30:31-70 (in the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament). It tells how Jacob took every speckled and spotted sheep as his own from Laban's flock.
In the Spring of 2012 we had 9 more baby lambs join the heard that continue to help with fiber production. We really like the Jacobs. From top left Below are Zoe, Zelda, Rose (has 2 sets of horns) and Snowball (now known as Snowball-less).
Uno & Dos - Born Spring of 2012
Goats were the first animals we brought to Aberdeen Mills. Princess and Milky Way were born in April of 2008 at the farm. They are a constant source of entertainment and they do help clear out brush.
Latte, Biscuit, Princess, Milky way, and Minerva are South African Boer Goats that were developed in the early 1900's for meat production. Their name is derived from the Dutch word "Boer" meaning farmer.
All the babies playing and eating by the creek....
Most of our hens are Araucana and Rhode Island Reds. The ancestors of the modern Araucana chicken were purportedly first bred by the Araucanians Indians of Chile -- hence the name "Araucana."
The Rhode Island Reds are a utility bird, raised for meat and eggs, and also as show birds. They are a popular choice for backyard flocks because of their egg laying abilities and hardiness. Non-industrial strains of the Rhode Island Red are listed as recovering by the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy.
Cats - Lots of Cats
We have lots of cats at Aberdeen Mills. At any given time we have up to 15. Many of them are very friendly and have taken up residence on our main house front porch. They tend to laze around most of the day. Play time picks up in the late afternoon and early evening. At night they are out and about - hunting mice we hope.
We have a number of interesting animals here at Aberdeen Mills.