May 15, 2019 1:12 pm

Sask. government reminding people to leave young wildlife alone

Although people are often well-intentioned and want to rescue what appears to be orphaned young animals, the Government of Saskatchewan is asking you to not touch them.

Will Dickey / The Canadian Press

The Saskatchewan government is reminding people in the province to leave young animals in the wild alone.

This includes animals such as fawns, ducklings, rabbits and songbirds.

Even if the animals appear helpless or lost, the province said in most cases they are not abandoned or deserted and the mother is nearby.

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They said young animals and birds get placed into seclusion by their mothers on purpose to protect them from predators.

Although people mean well, the government says humans can actually decrease the animals’ survival rate when attended to.

Wildlife is also known to carry diseases such as rabies and the West Nile virus, transmittable to humans.

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The province says only wildlife rehabilitators are licensed to look after orphaned or injured animals who can give them appropriate care and nutrition before releasing them back into the wild.

The only reason a young animal or bird should be attended to is if the parent is found dead nearby.

Signs to determine if a deer fawn is orphaned include if it has been lying in the same position for more than 10 hours, if it’s vocal, if it’s covered in insects or if it’s wet.

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If someone is unsure if an animal needs help, the province advises people to contact a conservation officer.

The province also reminds people to stay clear of adult wildlife such as deer and moose who wander into urban areas.

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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