17 facts about llamas from Wildlife World Zoo

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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

The Wildlife World Zoo in Litchfield Park is home to a herd of llamas including some adorable baby llamas. Get all the llama facts you need to know before you see them in person at Wildlife World Zoo!

17 Facts about Llamas

The llama is a South American relative of the camel, though the llama does not have a hump. These sturdy creatures are domestic animals used by the peoples of the Andes Mountains.

Llamas were first domesticated and used as pack animals 4,000 to 5,000 years ago.

Llamas can be 6 feet tall and weigh 280 to 450 pounds and can carry about a quarter of their body weight, so a 400-pound male llama can carry about 100 pounds on a trek of 10 to 12 miles with no problem.

In the Andes Mountains of Peru, llama fleece has been shorn and used in textiles for about 6,000 years. Llama wool is light, warm and water-repellent and their wool is used in the production of fabrics, rugs and ropes.

[App users click/tap here to see photo of llama]

Llamas are hardy and well suited to harsh environments.

Llamas are smart and easy to train.

Llamas are vegetarians and have efficient digestive systems.

Here's a fun, believe it or not fact: Llama poop has almost no odor. Llama farmers refer to llama manure as "llama beans." It makes great, eco-friendly fertilizer. 

[App users click/tap here to view photo of llama]

Llamas live to be about 20 years old.

A baby llama is called a "cria." It's pronounced KREE-uh. Mama llamas usually only have one baby at a time. Llama twins are incredibly rare. Pregnancy lasts for about 350 days--nearly a full year. Crias weigh 20 to 35 pounds at birth and can start running with the herd the same day they are born.

[App users click/tap here to view photo of llama]

Life span of llamas is between 20 and 30 years. 

Llamas come in a range of solid and spotted colors including black, gray, beige, brown, red and white.

Llamas are social animals and prefer to live with other llamas or herd animals.

[App users click/tap here to view photo of llama]

A group of llamas is called a herd.

[App users click/tap here to view photo of llama herd]

Llamas don't bite. They spit when they're agitated, but that's mostly at each other

They have excellent sense of sight, smell and hearing, which are used for detection of potential danger.

[App users click/tap here to view photo of llama]

Llamas have inherited fear of coyote, mountain lions and other dog-like animals. Some llamas are used as "guards" of the sheep because they quickly alert and protect the herd when they spot a predator.

Check out the llamas and so many more animals at Wildlife World Zoo in Litchfield Park. 

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