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5/23/2019
Don’t touch

That baby should be left alone.

Even if it is standing by the side of the road or sitting in the grass. Wherever it is. And even when it appears to have been abandoned.

Every spring, bear, deer, seals and other wildlife appear, some with young in tow.

In tow means that the mother might not be within sight of baby. But, mom knows where baby is.

If the mother has met her demise because of an encounter with other wildlife or a motor vehicle, there is a way to deal with that. First, still don’t touch the baby. Second, call the state Department of Fish and Game; F&G officials are trained to determine whether a baby animal has been orphaned. If it has, they know the proper response for the benefit of the baby.

But, if not orphaned, the mother is likely nearby foraging for food. She might even be watching from a distance whoever approaches her baby. If she’s a mama bear, then she likely won’t keep her distance.

Most frequently it is fawns that become the subject of well-intentioned rescues. These sorts of rescues can lead ultimately to a fawn’s death. If a zoo or something similar isn’t available, a fawn could be euthanized.

Not only is this the time of year for fawns, seal pups, bear cubs and the like, but it’s when people and their kids get outside, too. The warmer temperatures and increased daylight are enticing for weekend and evening adventures to campsites and hiking trails.

Spotting baby animals is likely. It’s OK to look, but don’t touch.