Leave Young Wildlife Where You Find Them


This time of year, FWP biologists, wardens and others too often observe how good intentions go wrong when young wildlife are picked-up and moved from their surroundings by well-meaning people.

Remember this advice if you see newborn wild animals: “If you care, leave them there.” Do not move or attempt to feed newborn wildlife. Also keep dogs on leashes when recreating outdoors.

To protect Montana’s deer and elk from disease, and because they are quickly habituated to human contact, FWP is unable to accept, hold, or rehabilitate deer, elk and moose. Should someone bring a fawn or calf to FWP, it must be returned to the site where it was found, or euthanized.

FawnOther wildlife species, such as birds and small mammals, are also best left in the wild. Usually, young animals picked up by humans can’t be rehabilitated, and they’re often abandoned by adult animals once humans have become involved.

Numerous incidents have shown that a newborn wild animal’s best chance at survival and a quality life is, “If you care, leave them there.”

For more information, visit the Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks website.