If you happen to come across a fawn all by itself – leave it alone!
In the spring and summer months, you may find what appears to be sick, injured or orphaned wildlife. Fish and Wildlife urges people to leave young wildlife undisturbed, according to the NJ Division of Fish and Wildlife.
Every year, especially around this time, the lives of many young animals are disrupted. Well-intentioned people may attempt to ‘save’ these animals while most often the mother is nearby.
If you find a young fawn laying alone, leave it there, it is not abandoned. The mother comes back several times each day to nurse the fawn.
If you’ve already picked up the fawn and brought it home – put it back. Even one or two days after removal from the wild, fawns can reunite with their mothers by returning them to where they were found.
Adult deer spend much of the day feeding and exploring. Fawns that are not strong enough on their legs to keep up with the adults are left behind.
Usually young fawns are quite safe because their color pattern and lack of scent help them to remain hidden until their mother’s return.
A list of licensed wildlife rehabilitators can be found here.
Attempting to keep wild animals as pets is illegal in New Jersey.