Llamas, Lama peruana, are the "camels" of South America. They are members of the camel family, Camelidae. They like to eat grasses and chew the cud but have only a three-chambered stomach, like camels, not four-chambered stomachs like other cud-chewers.
They stand 42 to 48 inches high at the withers and may be more than 4 feet long (plus a short tail) and from 300 to 450 pounds in weight. Their body is covered with a fine, rather long wool, which can be used to make warm clothing. The llama was domesticated as a wool and pack animal as long as 4,000 years ago by the Indians of Peru from the guanaco and Vicuna.
Llamas are generally gentle and quite intelligent and can be mischievous. They can be used as pack animals but it is not recommended to ride them, except for small children. If you annoy them they will spit at you.
Female llamas will breed throughout their lifetime and can begin breeding at 16 to 24 months. The gestation period is about 350 days. The baby (llama cria) weighs 25 pounds at birth. Twins are very rare. The llamas lifespan is from 20 to 25 years.