With April coming to a close, fawning season is just around the corner. WildSafeBC is reminding Cranbrook and Kimberley residents to leave fawns alone if they are found in and around your neighbourhood.
Danica Roussy, community coordinator for WildSafeBC Cranbrook/Kimberley, explained that a doe will often leave her fawn(s) alone for hours at a time while she feeds, returning throughout the day to nurse. So if a fawn is spotted alone it does not mean that it has been abandoned.
“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 its chance of survival,” said Roussy. “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 takes place from May to early July, until the fawns become less dependent on their mothers. Does can become very protective of their young as well, says WildSafe, and pet owners are asked to keep dogs on leashes during fawning season.
“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,” says WildSafeBC.
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.