Top 4 Differences Between Alpacas and Llamas

Photo by Sébastien Goldberg on Unsplash

Alpacas and llamas are so frequently mistaken for one another that some people think they are actually one animal with two different names. While both species are members of the lamoid family and have been domesticated by humans for thousands of years, they have a number of differences that are easily noticeable once you know about them. Check some of the most obvious ones below.


One easy way to differentiate an alpaca from a llama is their size. Alpacas are smaller, reaching an average height between 32 and 39 inches at their shoulders and weighing up to 200 pounds. Llamas reach a height of up to 4 feet at the shoulders and can weigh up to 450 pounds.


There is a noticeable difference between alpacas and lamas when you look at their faces. Alpacas have round and blunt faces and short ears while llamas have a longer face with less fur on it and banana-shaped ears.


Alpacas are covered with a dense and short coat of hair, which is more desirable in wool production. Llamas, on the other hand, have long and coarse hair.


Finally, alpacas and llamas have a different personality. Alpacas are timid and heard animals while llamas prefer to be on their own and are known to be short tempered.