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That night Posey and Whiskers slept at opposite ends of the pasture. Every time we looked the next day, they were apart. Gradually the distance between them decreased until they were only ten or twenty feet apart.

After a couple of days of nothing happening, we took Whiskers back home. We remembered hearing that you stood a better chance of breeding if you put the female llama in with the male.

We did just that the next day, after staking Levi and Tumbleweed out where they couldn’t see the goings-on. We didn’t want to make them jealous, and we wanted to minimize any disturbance among the males.

Then we walked Posey over. Whiskers made lovely gurgling noises in his throat. I’d heard breeders refer to these sounds as ‘orgling.’

As soon as Posey was in his field, Whiskers tried to mount her. We cheered. Posey explored the place, sniffing dung piles. She didn’t sit down for him. For several minutes, she strolled around. Whiskers had rested his front on her behind and was walking on his hind legs only. Lil Bit was running around by the fence, most interested in the proceedings.

“I guess it’s progress,” Kelly said.”Since we can see this field better from the house, let’s leave Posey in here for several hours and keep checking.”

So we did. Nothing happened. Late in the afternoon, we put Posey back in with Lil Bit and brought Levi and Tumbleweed home. Whiskers chased them around for a while.

The next day it rained off and on. During one of the nice spells, we took the two younger males out to graze and we again put Posey in with Whiskers. As before, he orgled and tried to mount her, and as before, she walked around the field with him hanging on behind. We decided that our absence might speed the course of true love, so we went inside to watch from the window. By the time we were at the window, Whiskers was browsing. That was it.

We went outside to remove Posey, planning to bring her back later, but after she was on lead, Kelly and I both had the same idea. What would Whiskers do if Posey were sitting down?

We hadn’t trained her to sit down. When I touched her legs, she pranced around, then sat to get away from me. Kelly took a firm hold on her lead. Whiskers came over, and began sniffing around Posey’s tail. Posey, startled, jumped up.

We got her back down, and Whiskers came right back. Orgling, he stepped over Posey, rubbing her sides with his front feet. He sat down on her. I quietly let myself out of the field and ran for the camera. Kelly was still holding Posey’s lead.

Finally something was happening. We had given Whiskers plenty of bawdy encouragement these past few days. As I took some pictures of the three of them, I hoped Kelly wasn’t too uncomfortable, hunched down and holding Posey’s lead. I wondered how long it took llamas to mate. Forty-five minutes came into my mind from somewhere, but I wasn’t sure. At least it had stopped drizzling.

“It was fascinating,” Kelly told me later. “Whiskers had a glazed look in his eyes. He seemed off in some other world and he never stopped orgling. I couldn’t believe how calm Posey was. You know she’s usually rather nervous, but she was so peaceful. And affectionate–she just kept nuzzling me, sniffing my pockets and my cap, rubbing my cheeks.”

“What about that time when she turned her head up to Whiskers?” I asked.

“I couldn’t really tell what that was,” Kelly replied. “You saw how he kept trying to bite her ears. She didn’t seem to mind that at all. I bet she just wanted to nuzzle him too.”

Posey’s rear was glistening. “Looks like the deed is done!” said Kelly.

“Now let’s hope for a daughter,” I suggested, imagining Posey giving birth easily to a beautiful baby girl llama, full term, everything perfect. We had wondered if motherhood might settle Posey’s youthful skittishness; this calm was a good sign.

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