Scossa cow gives birth to rare triplets
February 26, 2019
A Scossa beef cow gave birth to a rare set of triplets early Sunday morning.
Jeremy Scossa said they were keeping the triplets in a shed to protect them from the weather.
"It was a first for us," he said. "Of the folks I've talked to, so far, nobody can remember experiencing it."
Scossa said his research indicates the odds of triplets are about 105,000 to one.
"It can happen, but it's more rare in beef cattle than dairy," he said. "It's a first time for us. I guess it's a once in a lifetime experience."
Scossa said the births involved a 9-year-old cow and occurred at about 2:30 a.m.
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"For her it was really easy, which was surprising," he said. "One minute there was a calf, and then 10-15 minutes later there was another calf. That wasn't that unusual. Then 15 minutes later she lay back down and had the third. She just kept bringing them."
Scossa said that they've been handfeeding two of the triplets because the mother can't handle more than one at a time.
He said the other two will be turned over to cows that lose calves, which has been an issue this month after a relatively mild December and January.
"Now winter comes," he said. "I haven't seen this wet a February in decades."
The Scossa family has ranched in Carson Valley since 1885 after moving here from Alpine County.
The Record-Courier last reported triplet calves on Dec. 30, 1938, when H.H. Godecke announced the birth in his dairy herd.
The newspaper published a picture of the calves in its Jan. 20, 1939, edition after some questioned the story.