A llama’s gestation period is 11 1/2 months (350 days), with variations of plus or minus 2 weeks not uncommon. Normal labor generally lasts about 2 hours, with the baby presented front feet first, followed by the nose, head, body and rear legs. Dystocias (difficult births) are seen, but are not common. The mother usually delivers the baby from a standing position, where gravity will assist in delivery.When the baby, called a cria, is born, it is not surrounded by a sack. It is wet and covered with a membrane that may need to be cleared from the nose and mouth to allow breathing. The mother will not lick the baby dry. Normal crias, supported on legs that are still wobbly, will be up and nursing within an hour or so after birth. The attentive owner will make sure the mother has delivered a complete placenta within an hour or two after birth. Dipping the cria’s navel in mild iodine or Novasan is recommended to prevent infection. Normal birth weights are from 18 to 35 pounds, and the breeder will monitor nursing and weight gain daily. A cria often looses as much as a pound of weight the first day, and then should steadily gain 1/2 to 1 1/2 pounds a day thereafter. Routine IgG levels can also be run to ascertain adequate immunity through passive transfer.

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