More than just the cutest of the Camelidae family, with their fluffy fur these creatures are known for creating some of the finest fibers in the world. Alpacas have recieved a lot of press lately for their funky hair styles, funny memes and versatile fibers found in nature that are warm as wool yet super breathable.
But what might you not know about Alpacas? We’ve rounded up four fun facts!
1. They go wayyyy back!
Did you know alpacas were domesticated by the Incas more than 6,000 years ago and raised for their fleece? Back years ago, alpaca fibers was reserved for the rich and famous!
2. They are doing more than just giving us fibers to make Norlander Socks, they are therapeutic too!
When most people think of therapy animals they imagine dogs, but therapy alpacas are growing in popularity at hospitals, healthcare facilities and retirement homes around the world. For example, one couple in Australia has been providing therapy alpacas for 15 years. “They’re very sensitive and they’re very intuitive animals,” alpaca owner Nils Lantzke told The Canberra Times.
3. Alpaca are water-resistant!
No need for an umbrella here… alpaca are water-resistant, well technically their fibers are! Like wool, alpaca fiber is water-resistant and breathable so you will be comfortable in these durable socks.
The most common and perhaps most unusual when compared with other livestock species is the hum, a sort of closed-mouth drone that alpacas make often. The hum, like a cat’s purr, is a bit of a mystery; it’s common, but can range in tone and urgency, and seems to convey all kinds of different emotions. Unlike a cat’s purr, though, the hum seems to, more often than not, indicate discomfort: anxiety, nervousness, stress, boredom, non-ideal temperature. There’s really no way to figure out exactly what an alpaca’s hum is trying to communicate, but a close relationship between a single alpaca and a single human can often allow the human to discern some subtleties to the hum, changes in pitch, or timbre that can indicate specific emotions.