TREMENDOUS triplets are lighting up life on a farm near Whitchurch after a cow welcomed a healthy gang of calves.

The dairy cow, called Heidi II, and her new-born calves live in Lees Farm in Cross O'th Hill near Malpas, which is run by Steve Parke and his wife, Jan.

The couple said they were "chuffed" to welcome the unusual trio. Cows only occasionally have twins, and even then it is rare that both are healthy.

But all three of the newcomers at Lees Farm are in good condition, leaving the farmers delighted by their new arrival.

"We are chuffed to bits really because even with twins, it is not usual for a cow to have twins but sometimes you will only get one and the other one will die," said Jan.

"But to get three triplets, all as big and healthy as these are is brilliant."


Jan said she was first alerted to the prospect of her cow having triplets by their vet, Andy Hayton from Sandstone Vet Group and the scan received a number of hits because it is rare.

She added: "Our vet, Andy Hayton from Sandstone Vet Group, did the scan and spotted she was looking like triplets.

"He got our placement student who was with us then to video the scan.

"He posted it on his site and I think in a few days he'd had 1,500 hits at it because it is quite rare."

Jan said it is extremely rare to see a cow give birth to triplets.

She said: "It is as rare or rarer than ladies having triplets without hormone or fertility treatment.

"They are all healthy and it is great but it is unusual."

Feeing three calves will not be an issue for the Brown Swiss Cross breed of cow, which is large, but Jan said smaller cows would struggle to feed triplets.

She explained: "There mother is a Brown Swiss cross and she is a big cow.

"A smaller cow would struggle to carry them certainly as long as she did because she has carried them near full term.

"And they are all good sized calves.

"If she'd have had one of them you would say it is a good sized calf, but she has got three of them."