Microscopy Primer
Light and Color
Microscope Basics
Special Techniques
Digital Imaging
Confocal Microscopy
Live-Cell Imaging
Microscopy Museum
Virtual Microscopy
Web Resources
License Info
Image Use
Custom Photos
Site Info
Contact Us

The Galleries:

Photo Gallery
Silicon Zoo
Chip Shots
DNA Gallery
Amino Acids
Religion Collection
Cocktail Collection
Screen Savers
Win Wallpaper
Mac Wallpaper
Movie Gallery

Polarized Light Microscopy Digital Image Gallery

Alpaca Natural Charcoal Wool

Alpacas are members of the camel family, Camelidae, which inhabit South America and have been domesticated for thousands of years. Though the hoofed mammals are sometimes slaughtered for their meat, they are predominantly utilized for wool production.

Closely related to the vicuña, llama, and guanaco, the alpaca is often grouped with these other animals under the collective term lamoids, which is meant to distinguish them from the Old World camelids. Unlike true camels, lamoids do not feature humps on their backs, although they are otherwise quite similar in appearance. Both camels and lamoids are believed to have originated in North America, but over the course of history have come to inhabit completely different areas of the Earth. Today, the natural range of alpacas is restricted to only parts of Bolivia, Chile, and Peru, but the animals are appearing with increasing frequency in the United States, Canada, and several other countries where breeders have taken an interest in raising them, primarily as source of wool.

The coat of the alpaca is typically shaggy and lustrous, but varies significantly in color, sometimes appearing a light tan, yellow, or even white, while at other times exhibiting much darker hues of brown, charcoal gray, or black. When sheared for human use, the wool can also be readily dyed into an even greater array of colors. This fact, along with the material’s negligible weight, resistance to damage from the weather, and excellent insulating capabilities, ensures that alpaca wool finds frequent use in a variety of items, including coats, sleeping bags, and blankets. When combined with other fibers, alpaca wool is sometimes utilized in suit and dress fabrics as well.



Questions or comments? Send us an email.
© 1998-2022 by Michael W. Davidson and The Florida State University. All Rights Reserved. No images, graphics, scripts, or applets may be reproduced or used in any manner without permission from the copyright holders. Use of this website means you agree to all of the Legal Terms and Conditions set forth by the owners.
This website is maintained by our
Graphics & Web Programming Team
in collaboration with Optical Microscopy at the
National High Magnetic Field Laboratory.
Last modification: Friday, Nov 13, 2015 at 01:19 PM
Access Count Since November 20, 2003: 14667
For more information on microscope manufacturers,
use the buttons below to navigate to their websites: