EAG’s first plasma drive took place on 17 May. Organised and hosted by Harley Laver with Laura from Westpoint vets taking the blood, four farms took part. A plasma drive involves taking your donors, usually healthy males aged 3 or over to a central point, where a vet takes a pint of blood from each animal. The blood is refrigerated and then centrifuged to separate the plasma which is then frozen. You then keep the frozen plasma in your freezer until it is needed.
However even as Laura was taking the blood to be centrifuged, a crisis was happening at Hilly Ridge, with an alpaca called Amber giving birth to a premature cria born at just 310 days gestation. Team Hilly Ridge gave intensive care to the baby throughout the afternoon and evening and then she was taken to the Westpoint vets for that vital plasma transfusion. By the time Jo got her home again, she was able to stand, run around and be re-united with mum and start suckling naturally. Hilly Ridge Mis-fire continues to thrive, thanks to the plasma drive and the donor, Hilly Ridge and Churchfield’s stud, Furze Park Bourton.
Subsequently Harley was able to supply a pack of plasma to a gentleman for Kent with a critical cria – and the result was another life saved.
Churchfield and Park Side Suri still have some plasma available if you have a cria that needs it. EAG will be organising another plasma drive in spring next year.