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Photographer's Note

Ok thought it might be more appropriate to upload a non PP version...

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What animal has the finest wool on all the earth?

If you guessed the Llama, then think again. The alpaca? No, there is an animal with finer wool still. It is the vicuna. Never heard of it? You池e not alone. The vicuna is a rare wild animal which sports hair less than half the diameter of the finest sheep痴 wool. It痴 wool is not just for show, however. Because it lives at an elevation of between 12,000 and 18,000 feet on the slopes of the Andes Mountains it needs that insulating coat. Up there, near the snow line the days are beautifully sunny but at night the temperatures plummet to many degrees below zero. Other areas of the Andes especially on the western side are dry deserts. With such inhospitable conditions it is a wonder that the vicuna survives at all.

The vicuna, however, is wonderfully designed for its habitat. The animal has blood that is so loaded with red cells that even at the high altitudes where it lives, the vicuna can run at thirty miles per hour (50 kilometers per hour)(I wished I could!!). The vicuna also has an uncanny ability to survive without water. It has even been referred to as a cameloid because of it痴 likeness to a camel in it痴 ability to survive in arid conditions.
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Alongside Guanaco, Vicuna is the only non domesticated south american 'camels'. Eventhough efforts have been made to do so.

Here come TE, so what did we humans do? We started killing them for their wool, making then an endangered specis..

Photo taken at Vicuna National Park.

tech.
Negative scan,crop and usual PP to correct color and contrast Taken through car window.

rajhema, kensimage, AmiBe, CliffW, capthaddock, nerve, bibiweb, touristdidi, tcollin has marked this note useful

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Additional Photos by Bala Nallama (bnallama) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 312 W: 40 N: 497] (3763)
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