Through the generosity of longtime supporters of Quechua Benefit, Don and Julie Skinner, the Snowmass Community Health Clinic in Chivay will expand its operations to provide year-round dental care and eye exams for Colca Valley children, as well as prenatal care and ultrasounds for expectant mothers.
The Latest On:
We are happy to report that Ichupampa is rising from the rubble left by an earthquake in August 2016. Thanks to you, the Sister Antonia Memorial Kitchen in Ichupampa is nearing completion. The Quechua Benefit team was onsite last week, and the building will be up and running no later than March 15th.
Watch this new video to find out how Casa Chapi received its name, and how the Chapel at Casa Chapi came to be. The beautiful stained glass windows will take your breath away. Many of the local people who enter the chapel for the first time are immediately brought to tears. A production of Voice4Nations.
For the Corani EPD project to succeed in the dual goal of 1) increasing the price of the co-op’s fleece and 2) simultaneously improving the genetics of the member’s alpacas, it needed a micron measurement device. I consulted with Angus McColl of Yocom-McColl Testing Laboratories in Denver, Colorado, who recommended an OFDA 2000, manufactured by BSC Electronics of Australia.
Casa Chapi Children’s Village in the Colca Valley of southern Peru gets 100% of its energy from the sun. The Colca Valley gets about 330 days of sunshine a year. In October 2015, we installed a solar electric system to compliment the solar hot water heaters that were installed a few years before. These systems supply Casa Chapi with 100% of its energy needs, and we are proud that it’s entirely renewable!
The young veterinarian was flanked by three Quechua alpaca breeders, each with their felted cowboy hats firmly in place and nary a smile on their stoic, weather creased faces. They were from an important alpaca-growing region in district of Corani, near Macusani.
Generation interval affects the rate of genetic change simply because the more rapidly one generation of improved alpacas replaces the previous one, the faster the gain. It is determined by the average age of 1) producing males and 2) females in a given herd. Alpacas have a generation interval of four to six years for females and approximately five years for males, although this interval will vary from herd to herd.
Genetic variation is extremely important to the rate of genetic gain. The more variation for a particular trait in a population, the more potential there is for change. EPD’s allow breeders to maximize the use of genetic variation. They become a scientific way to use corrective mating together with variability between alpacas to your advantage.
Selection intensity means being highly selective of the progeny produced by the high-quality parents you have chosen for foundation stock, and retaining in your herd only the offspring that exhibit a superior expression of the heritable qualities for which you are selecting. This ensures that breeding values will remain high and that each generation of offspring should improve.
Selection accuracy is important if any improvement or gain is to be made. This means the traits you select for must be heritable, and the animals you choose for parents must have high breeding value for the traits under selection.