Merseyside charity sees surprise birth of baby alpaca

A LOCAL autism charity had some good news this month with the surprise birth of a baby alpaca at its site in Raby, Wirral.

Autism Together’s animal husbandry team manages a menagerie of animals – with help from the autistic adults the charity supports – including pigs, goats, rabbits, guinea pigs and, of course, alpacas. However, the team had no idea that mum Ali was pregnant.

Claire Quinlan, an Activity Leader at Raby was the first person to meet the new arrival.She said: “I come in at 7.30am and he had just been born.

“We had no idea at all, but it was lovely to come in and see a little baby lying in the field.”

When the charity acquired four alpacas – three females, Jenny, Davina and Ali, and one male called Inca – it was hoped that the patter of tiny hooves would be heard one day, but the animal husbandry team at Raby Gardens had no idea the miracle mum would be Ali.

As Claire first found the baby alpaca, or cria as they are known, she has developed a special bond with the infant. “We come in each day and sit down, mum and baby are becoming more comfortable with us being around.

When it came to naming the young cria, the team decided to call him Gabe, after the vet who saved mum Ali’s life a year ago.

Autism Together employs almost 1,000 staff, supporting around 400 autistic adults through day services and at residential and supported living locations in Wirral, West Cheshire and Wrexham.

The charity’s Raby site is in a rural area, with residential and respite services set alongside woodlands and fields for the people who live there to explore and enjoy safely.