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Let Wild Babies Be Wild

​Its springtime and elk, deer, bears, and other wildlife are now having their young. The natural behavior of wild animals is to sometimes hide their offspring alone while the adults go off to eat. The protective coloring and lack of scent on the young usually prevent predators from finding them while the mothers are feeding. People often think such animals are orphaned and pick them up with good intentions of helping them.

If you find a young deer fawn or elk calf lying still by itself it is probably not orphaned, just waiting for its mother to return. Picking it up is probably the worst thing you could do for it.

Every year the Blackfeet Fish and Wildlife Department receives young deer, elk, and birds that people have picked up or we get reports of people who are trying to raise an animal that they have "rescued." In the past, we have either returned the animal to where it was found in hopes that its mother would find it or taken it to a wildlife shelter. Due to concerns about possible chronic wasting disease (CWD) the wildlife shelters are no longer accepting elk calves or deer fawns. We are left with the options of either returning them to where they were found or killing them. For that reason, it is against Tribal regulations for people to pick up or have in their possession young wild animals. If you see an animal that you feel sure is orphaned contact a game warden or the Fish and Wildlife Office but DO NOT TOUCH it. Let's let wild animals stay wild.