Lake County Sheriff’s Office: Do You Know About Fawns That Appear Abandoned? They’re Probably Not

If fawns could talk: “If you find me in the woods, or even on your lawn, I am not abandoned.”

The Lake County Sheriff’s Office (LCSO) asks, do you know?

Doe often leave a fawn for hours on end. Chances are it has a sibling, but the fawns are not together. Doe separate their fawns at birth to increase their chances of survival from predators. According to the LCSO, the very worst thing we can do is assume a fawn is abandoned, pick the fawn up or take the fawn home. Fawns have highly specialized needs, and cow milk is not easily digested. The Lake County Sheriff’s Office recommended that people understand that the fawns are left by mother deer while they go off to feed. While it is very tempting to touch them or pet them, and call children to come and look, LCSO recommends observers appreciate the fawn from a distance, use care to keep any human scent away from them, and walk away.

The photo below is a picture of Rupert, a fawn who was delivered by cesarean delivery when veterinarians in the United Kingdom were unable to save his mother.

Deer give birth to calves (calving) from May to early July. In the first twenty minutes of a fawn’s life, the fawn begins to take its first steps. Fawns often stay hidden in tall grass or brush for one week until they’re strong enough to walk with their mothers.

Most fawns are born with their fur covered with white spots that usually fade away by the end of their first winter. The fawns spotted pelts mimic the appearance of dappled sunlight on the forest floor, and offer great camouflage. Fawns are programmed to keep totally still and quiet when hiding while their mother forages.

Fawns do not have strong scent that would attract predators,

The fawn and mother stay together for about one year. A male usually leaves and never sees his mother deer again, but females sometimes come back with their own fawns and form small herds.

The National Wildlife Federation recommends a few cases where it is okay to help lone fawns. If a fawn is clearly injured or it is located near a dead adult doe, then it is acceptable to seek help by calling your local animal control department or nature center. Professionals can either take the animal or locate a licensed wildlife rehabilitator for proper care of the fawn. If a hidden fawn is discovered on your property, the National Wildlife Federation recommends it’s up to the observerving property owner to keep pet dogs and children away from the fawn.

See also …

University of Wisconsin Madison Reproductive Seasonality in Deer

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