In the past week, state wildlife officers have seen a “sad parade” of orphaned fawns — baby deer taken from their mothers by people who found them and mistakenly believed they had been abandoned.
In the most recent case, Colorado Parks and Wildlife attempted Wednesday to leave the fawn where it had been found alone in hopes its mother would return.
Unbelievable! Yet another newborn fawn orphaned by someone in #ColoradoSprings who refused to leave it alone. @COParksWildlife officers are attempting to replace the fawn where it was found in hopes of avoiding a trip to rehab for the little critter. #LeaveBabyWildlifeAlone pic.twitter.com/OS0cJGwWn4— CPW SE Region (@CPW_SE) June 19, 2019
Hours later, the agency tweeted a photo of a different fawn that had almost suffered the same fate.
“It is NOT abandoned. Do NOT pick it up. Do NOT feed it. This fawn was nearly orphaned today in #ColoradoSprings by people who refused to honor our plea: #LeaveBabyWildlifeAlone,” read the tweet.
See this fawn? It is NOT abandoned. Do NOT pick it up. Do NOT feed it. This fawn was nearly orphaned today in #ColoradoSprings by people who refused to honor to our plea: #LeaveBabyWildlifeAlone. A @COParksWildlife officer put it back within minutes so it's mom can find it. pic.twitter.com/cgnP7hK0c3— CPW SE Region (@CPW_SE) June 19, 2019
Parks and Wildlife frequently gets calls about baby deer being found. The recommendation biologists give is to leave the animal alone. If a fawn is by itself and appears healthy, it’s very possible the mother deer is not far and has left it in a place it can return to.
“Admire it from afar,” said Sarah Watson with CPW. “Respect it’s space and you won’t have any issues.”
In the past week, wildlife officials have seen the twin tolls from vehicles hitting the animals as they crossed roads and misguided rescues.
On Friday, a fawn was brought into the southeast region’s office after its mother and twin were killed by a car. The fawn was taken to the nonprofit Wet Mountain Wildlife Rehabilitation in Wetmore.
The 2nd fawn today brought into @COParksWildlife's SE Region office in #ColoradoSprings. Twas orphaned after its mother and twin were killed by a car on U.S. 24 near Cascade. It will be moved to the nonprofit Wet Mountain Wildlife Rehabilitation in Wetmore. #wildlife #rescue pic.twitter.com/Iqfu5xB8PU— CPW SE Region (@CPW_SE) June 14, 2019
Another fawn brought in the same day had suffered a head injury from being hit by a vehicle.
“Quickly filling up and soon we’ll have no place to send them,” read a tweet from Parks and Wildlife.
Our first fawn is examined by @COParksWildlife officer Tim Kroening as staffer Andrea Weiner holds it. The fawn was found on U.S. Highway 24 near Manitou Springs. It appears to have been hit by a car and may have a head injury. Please watch for wildlife as you drive. pic.twitter.com/tJbBmt24Ho— CPW SE Region (@CPW_SE) June 14, 2019
A third fawn was picked up by someone Friday thinking it was abandoned. It’s a common mistake, yet a deadly one.
Today's third "rescue" fawn, likely less than 12 hours old, is not going to rehab. It was returned to the area it was picked up. @COParksWildlife Cassidy English placed it under a shade tree in a drainage where its mother was seen. #LeaveBabyWildlifeAlone https://t.co/wtnQWlpN1v pic.twitter.com/w96lvx3l4Y— CPW SE Region (@CPW_SE) June 14, 2019
Baby deer aren’t the only animals to be accidentally harmed when removed from their habitat. In May, Parks and Wildlife tweeted that a baby raccoon had died after being dropped off in the agency’s parking lot.
WATCH this baby raccoon and REMEMBER this: PLEASE leave baby wildlife alone. And DO NOT drop baskets of wildlife in a @COParksWildlife parking lot. Someone in #ColoradoSprings orphaned this raccoon then dumped it in the snow in our lot. Bring them inside! https://t.co/wtnQWlpN1v pic.twitter.com/O02rbmLOfF— CPW SE Region (@CPW_SE) May 22, 2019