Backcrossing: (1) Mating a hybrid to a purebred of a parent breed or line. (b) Mating an individual (purebred or hybrid) to another animal (purebred or hybrid) when the two animals have one or more ancestral breeds or lines in common.
Bale: A variable sized sack, square, or package into which fiber is compressed.
Beater: A toothed or spiked metal roller that is part of a cleaning or opening machine used to process fiber into yarn.
Base population: The population of animals whose parents are either unknown or ignored for the purposes of inbreeding and relationship calculation. Typically, this term applies to the animals appearing at the back of the pedigrees of the original individuals in a herd.
Basic colors: Seven of the total twenty-two natural colors of alpaca. Black, white, light fawn, fawn, silver gray, brown and rose gray.
Batt: A sheet of carded fiber, approximately one half to one inch thick and several feet long. Strips can be torn off and spun from a batt.
BC1: Backcross one. The first generation of crosses between hybrids and purebreds of a parent breed or line.
Berserk male: A male who was given too much affection by owners as a cria and shows erratic behavior and no fear of humans as an adult.
Biological type: A classification of animals with similar genotypes. Examples: prolific wool types (sheep), large dual-purpose types (cattle), heavy draft types (horses) and tropically adapted types (many species).
Biotechnology: Practicality married with scientific knowledge. Often refers to manipulating, locating, identifying or comparing genes. Also refers to reproductive technologies, for example artificial insemination.
Blanket: alpaca fleece of the highest quality, which starts at the shoulder, runs along the back and down each side and meets in the medullated belly fiber. Does not include belly, neck, leg, chest or britch. The image of a horse's saddle blanket is the origin of the term.
Blend: A finished textile that is made up of two or more different fibers, variants of the same fiber or different grades and colors of the same fiber.
Bloodline: Refers to pedigree.
Blowout factor: How much a given animal's fiber diameter increases (thickens) with age.
Bradford System: One of the three main methods of spinning worsted yarn in which longer fibers are used to produce very sleek, compact yarns.
Breaking Length: Measures the breaking strength of a yarn equal to its breaking load and equal to the tensile stress at rupture of the yarn.
Breed: A race of animals within a species. Same breed individuals usually have similar identifying characteristics and a common origin.
Breeding objective: A general goal for a breeding program or a definition of what constitutes the best animal and herd.
Breed true: Alpacas breed true if parents with a particular, simply inherited phenotype produce young with of that same phenotype only.
Breed type: The overall look of an alpaca.
Breeding value: The importance of an individual as a (genetic) parent.
Bred female: A pregnant alpaca.
Breeding: Ovulation as a result of mating between sire and dam.
Brushing: A finishing process for woven or knit fabrics in which abrading elements (often brushes) are used to raise a nap.
Bundled staples: A group of small staples that together form a larger staple. The formation of the small staples is a result of arrangement and density of the skin follicles. Bundling is an indicator of a dense fleece, due to the evenness of follicle size and consistency of shape in the skin.
Burning: Removing vegetable matter from alpaca fiber during processing using chemicals.
BVD Bovine Viral Diarrhea: A cattle disease that has negatively affected the North American alpaca community since 2001. It is typically an acute (short term) illness that the healthy alpacas immune systems can eradicate. However, pregnant females that contract the virus will either abort the fetus, or if it lives it may be persistently infected with BVD and become a carrier of the virus.
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