Llamas are even-toed ungulates, meaning they have hoofed feet with an even number of toes. It is a large mammal, related to the camel, which is native to South America. Llamas are closely related to alpacas, but are larger and have more of an oval-shaped head (alpacas have rounder heads).

Llamas can live for 20-25 years, and weigh between 300 and 450 pounds. On average, they stand 42 to 45 inches tall at the shoulder, but their necks and heads can make them up to six feet tall. Llamas can be many different colors – white, black, gray, beige, brown, or red – and they can be solid, spotted, or have various markings.

Yes – llamas are known to spit. Many llamas are easily annoyed, and if bothered too much they begin to make clucking noises and spit up stomach acid. Llamas are very intelligent animals, and can quickly learn to follow on a lead, carry packs, and pull carts. Some farmers use llamas as guardians of their other livestock to ward off coyotes and other predators. Llama wool is very warm, and llamas are commonly shorn once a year in the spring to keep them cool.


Alpacas are close relatives of llamas, though they are smaller and have a round face. Alpacas are indigenous to South America, living high in the Andes Mountains; today they are kept in large flocks in the mountains of Peru, Bolivia, and northern Chile. Unlike llamas, alpacas are not used to carry burdens – rather, they are mostly valued for their wool, which make warm blankets and ponchos.

There are two different kinds of alpacas. Suri alpacas are very rare, and have long, fine, dreadlock-like wool. Huacaya alpacas have thick, dense, crimped wool. Alpacas have more than 16 natural colors, and can be solid-colored or multi-colored.
Alpacas are herd animals, and can fall ill if isolated. They are alert and very curious animals. Alpacas communicate well with other alpacas and llamas, by humming or other vocalizations and using body language. They can live for 15-25 years, and weigh between 100 and 175 pounds – less than half the weight of a llama. On average, they stand about 32-39 inches tall at the shoulders.

Take a trip to a working farm!

The Eveland Family Farm is an 80-acre site in the northern Twin Cities suburbs. Located just 30 minutes from Minneapolis, we are open by appointment throughout the year, and have seasonal hours for pumpkin picking, fall decorations, farm tours and hay rides.
Eveland Family Farm's Fainting Goat