Two shipments of alpacas have laid the foundation for a Norwegian alpaca industry. By this spring interest and curiosity had grown to a point where an alpaca workshop was needed. Alpacas of Norway decided to invite Tim Hey from Inca Alpacas, to share his knowledge and enthusiasm with us. Tim’s one-day workshop covered everything from basic alpaca introduction to hands on husbandry and analysis of alpaca fibre. His engagement left no room for daydreaming or loss of concentration. We set up a classroom in Bjørg and Leif Inge Reime’s alpaca shelter and an adult alpaca Sally and her four-month old cria, Alan patiently allowed Tim to use them whenever needed.
Fleece samples were placed outside on a large table so we could learn to analyse, feel and compare the differences in quality and microns, understand what crimp meant and see what staples were. There has never been a better way of learning than through experience and when one has the privilege of handling alpaca fibre – it can easily become a passion. Shearing and toe-nail clipping engaged as many participants as were present. By allowing ample time for the sorting of fleece, we could use the information learned earlier in the day. Participants were very happy with the entire day, socialising and conversing, establishing contacts on which to build our future Norwegian Alpaca Society.