Did you know that 2024 has been designated as the United Nations Year of Camelids? The United Nations is working to bring attention to this often-overlooked species.
What is a Camelid you may ask…they are camels, llamas, alpacas, vicunas and guanacos. The species have been integral to human societies for centuries, and have adapted to diverse environments offering crucial services in areas of transportation, agriculture, and textile production.
Over the years some camelid species have faced endangerment due to poaching or habitat loss, they have played a significant role in food security and nutrition and have played a crucial role in the livelihoods of many communities. By focusing on biodiversity, conservation, sustainable agriculture, cultural exchange, and economic empowerment, this initiative aims to create a lasting impact on the welfare of camelids and the communities that depend on them.
From the iconic llamas of South America to the enduring camels of the Middle East, Asia, and of course Australia, this special year recognizes the vital roles that camelids play in various cultures, economies, and ecosystems around the globe.
And you can meet some of these beautiful creatures right here in Ipswich!
The Llama Farm
Did you know Ipswich is home to the largest herd of Llamas in Queensland? These gentle camelids are very friendly, and you can walk or feed them on two different tours at the farm.
Owner Shane Hancock also provides information about the species before your tour. The Llama Farm is also home to camels, donkeys, miniature ponies, goats, peacocks and more.
Summer Land Camels
At Summer Land Camels they rescue and breed one-hump dromedary camels. Australia has the largest population of wild camels in the world, and Summer Land Camels is Australia’s largest camel dairy (and the world’s largest wild camel training centre).
The farm is committed to using camels for regenerative and sustainable farming and you can learn about their camels and camel history on a farm tour and taste experience – or simply come along and for a few dollars feed and pet the friendly animals.
If you’re up for an adventure book in for a camel ride, you can go during the farms opening hours, or book in for a special Sunrise Camel experience.
After you’ve explored the farm head into the cafe for a camelcino, camellatte or their camel-milk gelato. Then check out the camel milk cheeses, vodka and skincare all created from the milk produced onsite.
Ewe Nique Hobby Farm
You can pet and feed alpacas at the Ewe Nique Hobby Farm. There are a range of farmyard animals you can meet and feed at the hobby farm, the alpacas are friendly and love to be fed carrots. After you’ve enjoyed your time with the animals you can grab a drink and some baked treats at the coffee shed. There is also souvenirs available to purchase so you’ll never forget your time at the farm!
The hobby farm is open Friday to Sundays with two sessions available in the mornings.
You can meet, pet and lead the hilarious and adorable alpacas at Mysteria Alpacas. There are black and brown and white alpacas and even a couple with striking blue eyes. Each has a name and visitors to the farm can purchase feed for the friendly characters or even opt to walk them around the property (parental supervision required for children aged under 8).
The farm is open on Sundays for two sessions and there is a farm shop with alpaca products and light refreshments on site.