Jim Ketch knew one of his cows was pregnant but when he walked out one morning to check on her, the Jacksonville farmer quickly discovered he had a unique situation on his hands.

"I'd just come out to check on them, and all three were already there. The last two were still wet. The other little one was already dried off. She'd just had the other two," Ketch said.

"I've never seen triplets. I've seen pictures, but I've never seen real triplets before. It's quite unusual. Probably never see them again."

It is indeed rare. According to one Prince Edward Island veterinarian, triplet cows, and all of the same sex, happens once every 100,000 births.

The triplet cows were promptly named by Ketch's grandchildren: Ave Rae, Jenny and Miley.


Triplet calves Ave Rae, Jenny and Miley were born on Jim Ketch’s Jacksonville farm. (CBC)

Aside from the novelty, multiple births are always not the best news for beef farmers. It's hard on the mother, more work for the farmer and the calves don't generally grow as fast or as big as single calves.

And the extra work has already begun for Ketch.

Ava Rae feeds constantly and unfortunately her mother can only handle one calf.

So the other two calves had to be taken from Jacksonville to Jacksontown, which is a few minutes away, to the home of David and Teisha Alexander.

They are now the surrogate parents to Jenny and Miley.

Teisha Alexander said the unique nature of caring for these two calves is all new to her.

"I just married [David] this past December so it's my first time farming, so it's all new to me as well," she said.

This is the second time in the last two years that a New Brunswick farmer has discovered triplet calves.

In 2011, George Bourque’s heifer had triplets.