25yo Wellington alpaca could set Guinness World Record for oldest living in captivity

A 25-year-old Wellington alpaca could go into the Guinness Book of World Records as the oldest alpaca in captivity.

The alpaca, named Wainui, is celebrating his 25th birthday this week.

His owner Vicki Cordier bought him in 2002, and they've been best mates ever since.

"He's one special alpaca," she said.

So special that he's made it to a record-breaking age of 25.

"Hopefully he's going to be recognised as the oldest living alpaca in captivity by the Guinness Book of Records."

The previous record-holding alpaca was 24 years and 300 days old. It's not known if it's still alive.

But Cordier has put the application into Guinness World Records anyway.

"So we're working through getting that approved, but they've accepted my application so that's a good sign."

The birthday boy even got a cake which is all part of the secret to living this long - a life full of TLC.

"He gets very well looked after, he has coats and he goes inside every night, and gets breakfast and dinner. He's in good health, other than his eyesight which is a little fragile at the moment."

And while most alpacas get their annual haircut while strapped to a shearing table, Wainui is carefully hand-clipped so that it's a less stressful experience.

Cordier believes there may be other ancient alpacas out there.

"There's always a chance now, because of the publicity, that another old alpaca will appear. That'd be awesome - I just want to know how long alpacas can live for."