baby animals
Travis Smola

Michigan DNR Reminds the Public to Leave Baby Animals Alone This Spring

Michigan DNR reminds the public to leave baby animals alone.

As the winter wanes and signs of spring arrive, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources is finding itself having to remind the public of something they should already know.

Leave the newborn baby animals alone!

"Please resist the urge to help seemingly abandoned baby animals," DNR wildlife communications coordinator Hannah Schauer said in a press release. "Many baby animals will die if removed from their natural environment, and some have diseases or parasites that can be passed on to humans or pets."

Fawns are the most common animals that are removed from the wild. Mostly because a doe will often leave a fawn unattended for hours at a time and many people mistake them as having been abandoned. In reality, disturbing or touching the fawn may hurt its chances for survival.

"Give it plenty of space and quickly leave the area. The mother deer will return for her fawns when she feels it is safe; she may not return if people or dogs are present," the release states.

The DNR says baby animals removed from the wild may become too acclimated to humans and thus, unable to return to the wild. But there are also concerns about the animals getting more aggressive once they are older and reach maturity.

In fact, the DNR says the only time an animal should be removed from the wild is if it is known the parent is dead or injured. And even then, it should only be done by wildlife rehabilitators.

It may seem extreme for the DNR to have to re-hash what seems like common knowledge, but there's precedent for it. Last July, a Michigan woman was fined for kidnapping multiple fawns from the wild.

A month earlier in June, another woman in California was nabbed by game wardens after attempting to sell a fawn on Craigslist.

What Michigan is doing with this news is actually becoming more common as more states attempt to educate the public well in advance of baby animal season.

Let's all enjoy the cute baby animals this spring, but leave them in the wild where they belong!