Golden Spirit Alpaca Ranch
Katie Thomas (author)
Location(s): Golden Spirit Alpaca Ranch
In the heart of Odessa, you will find a sprawling, 75-acre farm that is dedicated to the sustainable care of alpaca. Beautiful, peaceful and docile - the alpaca is an animal with Peruvian roots dating back to the Incan Indians. Once hunted, almost to extinction, the Inca Indians realized the wealth and many uses of alpaca fleece, which led to the animal’s preservation. Today, Golden Spirit Alpaca Ranch continues the tradition of preserving alpaca for the utilization of fleece through dedicated care and compassion. Golden Spirit Alpaca Ranch is home to 185 alpacas that have been hand-selected and raised with the utmost care. Each animal, from the lovable babies to the mothers and herd-sires, is treated with love, quality care and complete compassion, which is why Golden Spirit is a leader in alpaca farming.
Ranch owners Brenda and Frank Crum began Golden Spirit Alpaca Ranch in 2006. The couple began their ranch with just a few animals, but Brenda’s drive and passion for learning soon led to a bigger journey that has become Golden Spirit Alpaca Ranch. Brenda says, “We wanted to get involved with an animal that would offer a sustainable product, while being unique and personable. The alpaca is a very independent animal with varying personality traits. Understanding each animal’s unique personality has helped us build the framework of Golden Spirit. From the very beginning of working in the alpaca industry, I embarked on a journey of learning with Frank. We consulted with business leaders and veterinarians, researched feed and nutrition, and dove in to get our hands dirty. We soaked in as much information as possible by continuously attending shows and getting involved in industry associations. The time we spent learning from the animals and other leaders in the industry helped us with our ranch so much, which is why I now spend a lot of time sharing what I have learned with other alpaca enthusiasts. We are here to preserve the health of our animals, focus on quality fleece production and to share the knowledge we gain with the community.”
Over the past eight years, Golden Spirit has accumulated many awards for animal excellence, due to their continued perseverance of high caliber animals. During alpaca shows, the animals are judged based upon fleece quality, color, proper gait, structure, reproduction ability and other criteria. When showing alpaca fleece, judges base their awards on six different grades, which range from coarse to ultra fine. Golden Spirit Alpaca Ranch has won blue ribbon awards, competitive banners and more for fleece, structure and animal behavior. Brenda says, “We breed our alpacas based upon quality of animals that will produce a nice fiber. I am very content selling our product to weavers and spinners. Our retail store has some amazing all-natural fiber products that are not only beautiful, but sustainable and organic. The alpaca is truly an amazing animal; we are able to utilize 95 percent of shorn fiber from each alpaca.”
At Golden Spirit Alpaca Ranch, the goal is to know, study, monitor and enjoy each animal. Golden Spirit’s dedication to the wellbeing and stature of each animal allows them to offer the finest available animals on the market with: solid conformation, superior density, amazing fineness, fleece uniformity, second-to-none presence and unparalleled genetics. The qualities mentioned are what make Golden Spirit Alpaca Ranch the best place to buy, breed or board when it comes to alpaca.
Many people buy an alpaca from Golden Spirit and board there. Brenda explained to me that others will buy an alpaca as an alternative to a family dog. “They can make wonderful companions and teach responsibility to kids, without the hassle of an inside pet. A bit of land, the proper protection and a lot of love are a few things an alpaca needs to become a family pet,” says Brenda. “They are relatively easy to maintain with the proper knowledge and care.”
In addition to boarding, breeding and selling alpaca, Golden Spirit Alpaca Ranch has a retail store that will soon be expanding. I was able to touch the quality of product sold at Golden Spirit and felt amazed at the softness and warmth of the jackets, shawls and scarves. From knit toys made from alpaca fleece to rugs, purses, scarves, hats, socks and outer wear, there is really no limit to what can be made from the amazingly soft and durable fleece of the alpaca. Brenda and Frank are in the process of expanding the retail selection of the ranch in a few months time and both are looking forward to offering the community a chance to experience the wonders of alpaca clothing and materials. Shorn alpaca fleece can be dyed to get the colors you want, so if you are looking for an all-natural fiber rug or type of material, Golden Spirit can accommodate your needs. The ranch uses natural organic dyes that are environmentally friendly, so you can feel good about making a conscientious purchase that is not only sustainable, but beautiful and well crafted as well.
Golden Spirit Alpaca Ranch hosts events and seminars for educational purposes and awareness. On January 24th, Dr. Norm Evans will be teaching a lesson on how to become a confident alpaca midwife. The Neonatal Clinic and Wet Lab will include hands-on practice, in addition to a wealth of knowledge provided by Dr. Norm Evans whom is a renowned veterinarian with a focus on alpacas. Other events and seminars will be going on throughout the year, so make sure to sign up for the Golden Spirit Alpaca Ranch; email blast at www.goldenspiritalpaca. com.
If you are interested getting involved with the animal, breeding, buying, boarding, taking a tour or you just want to know more about the wonderful breed of alpaca, please call (813) 920-2475, email firstname.lastname@example.org, visit www.goldenspiritalpaca.com or check out their facebook page! The Golden Spirit Alpaca Ranch is located at 10937 Tarpon Springs Road in Odessa.