Good samaritans hurting, not helping, fawn

KMSS-TV
Friday, June 28, 2013 - 1:08pm

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) is reminding people who encounter what appear to be abandoned young deer, alone in the outdoors, that those fawns should be left undisturbed.

Every year the department receives calls from concerned citizens who have found what they consider to be "abandoned" fawns. Well intentioned, concerned citizens sometimes bring fawns home and then call the department to retrieve and raise them.

LDWF is alerting the public that it is against the law to capture young deer or any other wild animal. If caught transporting or possessing wild deer without a permit, well meaning individuals may be subject to citations and fines.

“Picking up fawns seriously diminishes their chance to live a normal and healthy life,” said Emile Leblanc, LDWF Wildlife Division biologist. “When a fawnis born it is weak, awkward and unable to move well enough to feed and escape predators. However, the newborn fawn has a coat of light brown hair liberally covered with white spots that provides excellent camouflage against predators. The mother doe will remain in the area to feed and nurture the fawn. When the young deer gets older and stronger it will be able to forage for food with its mother.”

When encountering fawns in the wild, simply leave them untouched and depart quietly from the area. This action will provide the young deer its best chance to survive in the wild and prevent a possible citation for a well intended outdoorsman.

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