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March goes out like a lamb — or four of them

This momma gave birth to quadruplets on St. Paddy
This momma gave birth to quadruplets on St. Paddy's day, shocking her owner's Audrey and John Svetich of Duncan.
— image credit: Ashley Degraaf

Audrey Svetich came out to peer into her barn St. Paddy's Day morning, expecting to gawk at a beautiful newborn lamb.

"I said, 'Aaw, look at the little lamb,' and (husband John) said, 'Keep on looking.'"

There wasn't just one.

Try four.

"I came out real early in the morning, around 3 a.m. and nothing had happened then," John said. "I came back sometime around 8 a.m. and then there were four."

Twins and triplets are far more common among sheep but farming experts say quadruplets are extremely rare.

So rare, that it inspired the Daily Mail UK to report on a sheep giving birth to quadruplets not once but twice within 10 months in 2012.

Internet searches on quadruplet lambs show they're not unheard of but quite out of the ordinary. John and Audrey had no clue their sheep was carrying four babies.

"It was quite a shocker for us," said Audrey.

"I've asked around and haven't heard of anyone around here having quadruplet lambs," said John. "I've even asked the place where we get feed from and they hadn't heard of anyone either."

She and John have had a small hobby farm on Cowichan Lake Road for about 32 years.

"We got sheep mainly to keep the grass down," John said.

The Svetich's aren't new to their sheep having multiples. Last year they saw triplets, although one of the babies died at birth, and the year before twins.

The four-year-old momma to the quads, a Dorset/Suffolk cross, wasn't too thrilled with visitors to her new arrivals.

The four fuzzy black beauties — two little rams and two young ewes — however, basked in the attention between feedings.

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