Like a lot of animals, Bess hasn't read her instruction manual. Alpacas are supposed to give birth in the morning. Bess spent all morning and most of the afternoon bleating and fidgeting, and went into active labour at 4 pm, which progressed very rapidly.
After two failed matings, a lost pregnancy during winter, and a 376-day gestation, Bess has given birth to a daughter, called Patience, weighing 13 1/2 pounds. Congratulations to her father, 'Jessamine Redlands'.
The rest of the day was spent making sure the cria had worked out how to suck properly, and barricading mother and daughter into the field shelter as it is expected to rain tonight. The field is full of clover at the moment and I managed to kneel on a bee while checking on Bess. This became more painful as the day went on and it is now difficult to straighten my leg. I don't have footage of the cria being born unfortunately, as the placenta started coming at the same time and one leg was out more than the other, so I had to help the cria to come out.