MONTPELIER, Vt. - Vermont officials are urging people to leave young wildlife alone.
The Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department says picking up wildlife can do more harm than good and it's against the law.
Here are some tips on dealing with wildlife this spring and summer:
- Deer and moose nurse their young at different times during the day, and often leave young alone for long periods of time. These animals are not lost. Their mother knows where they are and will return.
- Young birds on the ground may have left their nest, but their parents will still feed them.
- Young animals such as fox and raccoon will often follow their parents. The family of a “wandering” animal searching for food is usually nearby but just out of sight to a person happening upon it.
- Animals that act sick can carry rabies, parasites or other harmful diseases. Do not handle them. Even though they do not show symptoms, healthy-looking raccoons, foxes, skunks, and bats also may also be carriers of the deadly rabies virus.
- Many wildlife species will not feed or care for their young when people are close by. Obey signs that restrict access to wildlife nesting areas, including hiking trails that may be temporarily closed.
- Keep domestic pets indoors, leashed or fenced in. Dogs and cats kill many baby animals each year.
- Avoid projects that remove trees, shrubs and dead snags that contain bird and other nests during the spring and summer.
Anyone who finds an abandoned animal you can contact the Vermont's Fish and Wildlife by visiting their website or by phone at (802)-828-1000.
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