What to do when you find a fawn
By Danica Roussy
It’s that time of year again (fawning season for deer) and WildSafeBC would like to remind people that if they find a fawn, it should be left alone.
A doe will often leave her fawn(s) alone for hours at a time while she feeds, returning throughout the day to nurse. Scentless and silent, fawns may appear to be orphaned and helpless, but the best thing you can do for a fawn is to leave it alone. As soon as you remove that fawn from the bedding area, you are greatly decreasing it’s chance of survival. Please stay on marked trails as this reduces your chance of stumbling upon a hidden fawn. If you do find a fawn, be cautious and alert as you may have just come between a mother and her baby.
Fawning season occurs from May to early July until the fawns become more independent of their mothers. It is important for pet owners to keep dogs on leash during this time. Does may see pets as predators or threats to their newborns since dogs are members of the canid family and are the natural predators of fawns in the wild. If a dog comes too close, the doe may become aggressive and attack the dog.
It is important to also note, picking up any wildlife is illegal under the Wildlife Act and could result in a fine.
If you observe a fawn or other young animal that appears to have been left alone for an extended period of time, contact the BC Conservation Officer Service (COS) 24/7 at 1-877-952-7277.
Residents can also report deer sightings online WildSafeBC’s Wildlife Alert Reporting Program (WARP), available at www.wildsafebc.com/warp. This program allows you to see what wildlife has been reported in your neighbourhood and be alerted of new sightings. However, please note that these reports will not be monitored by the COS.
Wildlife that is in conflict or a danger to the public should be reported to the COS directly at the number above.
WildSafeBC Kimberley – Cranbrook is grateful for the generous support the program receives from its funders including the City of Kimberley, the City of Cranbrook, the Regional District of East Kootenay, Columbia Basin Trust, the British Columbia Conservation Foundation and the BC Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy.
Danica Roussy is WildSafeBC Kimberley – Cranbrook Community Coordinator