Camelid Parturition - Anatomy & Physiology

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Stage 1

  • Uterine myometrium contracts,pushing the foetus towards the birth canal.
  • Cervix is relaxed.
  • Lasts 2-6 hours.
  • Female will appear restless, urinate and defecate repeatedly. She will also seek isolation from the group.

Stage 2

  • Fluid appears around the vulva.
  • A 'water bag' and possibly the amnion may also appear around the vulva.
  • Bulging of the pereneum.
  • Correct presentation is both forelimbs and head first (as in sheep).
  • Cria delivered feet first, followed by the head, shoulders and the rest of the body.
  • Mother may remain standing throughout, or lie down.
  • Normally lasts 5-20 minutes.

Stage 3

  • Delivery of the placenta should occur within 2 hours.
  • If delivery of the placenta exceeds 6 hours, this is considered abnormal.
  • If the placenta does not pass within 24 hours, veterinary intervention is required.


  • Usually delivered 'inside out'.
    • Should be reddish in colour with a slightly rough surface.
  • Occasionally it is reversed.
    • Whitish in colour with a smooth surface.
  • Crescent shaped with the pattern of both uterine horns visible.