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Why you must resist (irresistible) baby deer

Conservation authorities encourage the public to enjoy wildlife from afar.
May 15, 2013 - 12:31 PM

While there are many who despise deer for intruding on their gardens, there are others who would gladly open their arms to them.

It's the time of year conservation officials are expecting to receive calls about orphaned wildlife, such as baby deer. But according to Sgt. Josh Lockwood, conservation operations supervisor for the North Okanagan, efforts to help nurse a baby animal back to health can be very misguided.

"The mothers, the does, will leave the fawns sometimes for up to two days in search of food then come back to retrieve them from where they left them," Lockwood says. "If handled by humans they're not likely to be readopted with their mother."

He says the animal's best hope of survival hinges on being left alone. "Yes it is unfortunate, but sometimes nature has to take its course," Lockwood says. "Wildlife parks are full, and will not be accepting numerous amounts of fawns that people pick up on the side of the road or in their yard."

He says to take action only if the fawn appears to be in distress, and even then, not to touch it. Instead, he encourages people to call the wildlife biologist with the ministry of forests, lands and natural resource operations at (250)490-8200.

Along with cute baby deer, bears are also expected to start crossing paths with humans now that winter hibernation is over. Lockwood says to keep BBQs clean and stored away when not in use.

"Put bird feeders away. Spring is here, birds don't need to be fed," Lockwood says. "If you have feeders with sunflower seeds and stuff, you will have bears coming into your yard."

If you have a fenced yard, shut the gate. "Bears typically take the path of least resistance."

To contact the reporter for this story, email Charlotte Helston at or call (250)309-5230.

News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013
InfoTel News Ltd

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