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Wednesday, 10 April 2013 10:41

DNR encourages public to leave wildlife in the wild

(AREA) -- With the arrival of spring, wild animals are giving birth and hatching the next generation. Baby red foxes appeared in dens during the last days of March and the first days of April. The first litters of cottontails will appear soon. Great-horned owls have already hatched and are growing up in stick nests high above the ground. Mourning doves have made nests and some have already laid eggs. The DNR reminds residents that it is important to remain at a distance and resist the urge to try to help seemingly abandoned fawns or other baby animals this spring. It is not uncommon for deer to leave their fawns unattended for up to eight hours at a time. It is illegal to possess a live wild animal, including deer, in Michigan and 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.

PICTURED: Springtime brings sightings of baby animals, like this young fawn hidden in the tall grass. While fawns may seem abandoned, they almost certainly are not - deer often leave fawns unattended for long periods to help prevent them from being detected by predators.