Llama rescued from irrigation canal early Thursday near Zuber and Burma roads

This tired and shivering llama was rescued from an irrigation canal Thursday morning north of Riverton. (Ernie Over photo) 

(Riverton, Wyo.) – A tired and cold female llama was rescued this morning from an irrigation canal north of Riverton after spending the night, and possibly longer, stranded in hip high water. The shivering and wooly animal was rescued by Brett Ortiz, whose grandfather Red Lobdell owns the llama, and by Jim Fenton. Together with with Fremont County Sheriff’s Deputy Sara Trehearne, the three managed to get a rope across the canal and direct the llama to a non-steep area of the canal. The two young men then used the rope to help pull the llama from the water and up onto the bank.

“I think it’s been in there for a couple days,” Trehearne said. Ortiz said his grandfather had let the llamas out of their pasture and into a fenced area around the canal to graze and drink, but the female llama apparently slipped and fell in. A partner llama stood nearby watching the rescue effort.

Brett and Jim coaxed the llama inside the canal to bank-side with a pail of llama chow but were unsuccessful in getting a bridle on the beast, who kept pulling away. Trehearne suggested using the rope to move the llama to where it could climb out. That technique was successful.

The tired and shivering llama quickly rejoined the other llama and stood warming itself in the morning sun.

Jim Over also assisted in the rescue effort, using a long tree branch to keep the llama from moving  upstream while the rope was stretched across the canal, along with Buster the dog and a goat.

Photos by Ernie Over