Our llamas have been flirting with each other from a distance for weeks now. It’s been obvious for some time that they’d like to be back together in the same pen, but we were keeping them apart to give Keira plenty of time to recover from losing her cria. I also wanted to give them their yearly vaccinations before letting them back together.
Well, it’s been 5 months now since Keira lost her cria, so she ought to be in as good as physical shape as she’s going to get! They’ve had their vaccinations, and since it’s supposed to be better for crias to be born in the fall and there’s an 11 – 11 1/2 month gestation – – – it’s time!
Accordingly, this weekend we let Samson out of solitary confinement. He went out through a pasture Keira had been in and left some droppings, so naturally, had to stop and check them out.
Step 1 of the Llama Courtship Ritual:
Don’t ask me why he feels it necessary to sniff then bare his teeth and arch his head and neck towards his back. I guess if you’re a male llama, it’s just the thing to do.
But things really heated up when he got to where he could communicate with Keira directly across the fence.
Step 2 of the Llama Courtship Ritual:
In case you can’t tell, the male llama, Samson, is the one on the left with his motor running.
Our Maremma LGD (Livestock Guardian Dog) went crazy over the whole situation. She sticks close to Keira and Cinnamon (our little doe goat), and she wasn’t happy about Samson making such a racket over Keira. I think she was wondering if he had honorable intentions, ha, ha!
At first Samson didn’t realize that the gate was open to the pen Keira was in. When he did. . . well, things got really serious! Keira was receptive and Samson was raring to go!
Step 3 of the Llama Courtship Ritual:
The llamas are in the shadows… hey! Let’s give them some privacy, okay? We’ll just say that if we don’t get a cria in 11 or so months, it won’t be because Samson didn’t do his part.
As for Neffie, she remained decidedly unhappy about the whole situation. She kept looking at the llamas, then looking at me and barking, as if she were saying, “Are you going to let him get away with that???”
Yes, as a matter of fact, I am.
Sorry Neffie, but it’s the only way to get a cute little cria. Besides, Samson is quite honorable. He stays close to his woman, even after she gets pregnant and cranky.
Now if Keira will just deliver a healthy little cria next fall. . .