Flying M Ranch ~ Read Our Opinion


I am Michael Murphy and with my wife Janis we own and operate the Flying M Ranch in central Kansas. We were originally attracted to Suris by two things, we felt their rarity would keep their market value higher than the more plentiful Huacaya; and their beauty and elegance appealed to us much more than their “fuzzy” cousins (no offense intended J). As our herd grew and we became active in the show ring, we also grew frustrated trying to show against animals that had obviously been groomed. The problem varies and is not always present at shows, but the larger the show them more likely you are to find yourself competing against farms that are at a minimum “bending the rules”, and at times outright trashing them. Is there anything more beautiful than a Suri walking (or better yet, pronking) in the pasture, their fiber swaying and shimmering in the light? Furthermore, when you look at a prospective animal purchase at a show, are you seeing the “natural” beauty or something that has been enhanced? Is that fiber so clean because the fiber is exceptional or because someone spent hours cleaning and stripping it? Now, a shameless plug for The Suri network. We all realize that show results are the opinion of a judge on a particular day against particular animals who happened to be there. TSN has been working on a research project for over 4 years ( I had no idea how long these projects can and do take!). We are nearing the end of the project and are anxious to see the results. We believe it will be possible for us (breeders) to scientifically measure the quality of fiber (beyond micron). Make your purchasing and breeding choices using science, not ribbons! Will this make shows obsolete? Certainly not! We all love to show off our “kids”, and Janis and I also enjoy fleece shows. Show performance is not without its merit. TSN’s statement of purpose is; "Dedicated to the preservation of the suri alpaca" but possibly more important is our slogan, “Rarest of Breeds, Ultimate Natural Fiber”. This is what we all want, this is what we all strive for, this is what we should all show!

Michael Murphy