Five-in-a-row for Kerry: Farmer amazed by cow's historic delivery of calves

Thriving: Patrick Howard and his son Patrick Jnr with the four surviving calves. Photo: Domnick Walsh
Thriving: Patrick Howard and his son Patrick Jnr with the four surviving calves. Photo: Domnick Walsh

Ralph Riegel

A Kerry farmer admitted he was astounded when one of his cows made history, by giving birth to five calves in a single delivery.

Patrick Howard, from Castleisland, Co Kerry, said he was still in shock after his cow delivered the calves, one of which didn't survive birth.

"She looked heavy enough alright but I had no idea she was carrying five calves," he said. "She is a second calver and is a fine cow."

Mr Howard said his problem now was that the cow was struggling to provide enough milk for her four surviving calves, who were thriving.

"They are absolutely flying it - just like the Kerry footballers," he joked.

Such a five-calf delivery was previously only recorded in Mexico.

"I spotted that the cow was going into labour on Saturday and I brought her into the shed.

"One calf came out OK and then there was another coming.

"The cow didn't seem to be settling down. She laid down again and, when I checked, there was still another calf.

"She had delivered three by this stage. I couldn't believe it when, 10 minutes later, she seemed to be going into labour again.

"My wife came out and the two of us were amazed when we realised that the cow still wasn't finished - she went again."

Sadly, the fifth and final calf was stillborn.

Irish Independent