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What should you do if you find a baby deer?

Overall, leaving fawns alone to be in their natural habitat remains the best rule of thumb.
Fawn in woods
Fawn in woods(Roanoke Animal Wardens/RPD)
Published: May. 1, 2022 at 7:08 PM EDT
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - With almost one million deer in Tennessee, it’s possible to run across a fawn in the early spring to summer. The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency shared points of advice for those who might approach or come close to a baby deer in the wild.

A spokesperson with the TWRA reiterated that taking a fawn from the wild was illegal.

“When you remove a fawn from the wild, you have stolen the baby from the mother,” a TWRA spokesperson said.

They also noted fawns were not orphans as mothers will leave them alone to rest, eat and hide them from predators; therefore, it would be best to leave them alone.

If you come across baby deer, they will often lower their heads, lie very still and take fewer normal breaths, all natural defenses. The spokesperson said they aren’t sick if acting in such a manner. Afterward, wildlife experts advise keeping a reasonable distance or leaving the area, as the mother will perceive visitors as predators and will not return.

Overall, leaving fawns alone to be in their natural habitat remains the best rule of thumb.

“Fawns have an excellent chance of surviving if you leave them alone,” the TWRA representative said. “Humans have well-meaning intentions to care for a fawn but be educated and do what’s best for the fawn.”

Those interested can find more information about deer in Tennessee can be found here.

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