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Are Llamas Intelligent?

This article was the 41st in a series of columns under the heading Observations from the Pasture in the GALA Newsletter. It was originally published in October 2006.

Intelligent: Having good understanding or a high mental capacity; quick to comprehend, as persons or animals. Having the faculty of reasoning and understanding. (Dictionary.com Unabridged.)

Are Llamas Intelligent?

This column reflects some of my observations of Jeanne’s and my herd. Since we do not have alpacas, I have not included them in this discourse. It is my personal opinion that if we did have alpacas, we would find many, if not all, of the traits described herein.

I chose my topic for this Newsletter because of three events (1 immediately past, 1 in the near future and 1 in the distant past).

When discussing whether a species is intelligent, we are confronted with a set of rather subjective definitions. Thus we can anticipate significant differences in the conclusions of those analyzing the intelligence of the various species (including Homo sapiens). My personal conclusion is that llamas are very intelligent and my reasoning is as follows:

These are some of my observations that lead me to believe that llamas are highly intelligent. What are your thoughts? Today might be a good day to sit in your pasture(s) with your animals and ruminate on their intelligence.