BILLINGS – Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks officials in south central Montana have heard reports during the past two weeks of aggressive deer and antelope does.
Particularly during this time of year in settings where people, dogs and wildlife are in close proximity, new deer and antelope moms are doing what comes naturally – protecting their days-old fawns.
In the days after they give birth, deer and antelope does frequently leave their fawns hidden away in tall grass or brush while they take time to eat and care for themselves. But they keep a close eye on the places where the fawns are waiting. When people, dogs or predators come around, the new moms may aggressively try to protect their young.
The best solution: Give young deer and antelope some space this time of year. Leave the area where fawns are tucked out of sight and avoid any area where antelope or deer moms are showing stress, concern or aggression. In a few days, young deer fawns will be old enough to hang out with their mom and flee from danger. Antelope fawns will be born during the next two weeks and should be ready to come out of hiding by the end of the month.
In the meantime, anyone who finds a fawn hiding in the tall grass or brush with no apparent adult animal around should leave the area and leave the baby animal alone. Never pick up young wildlife just because it seems abandoned – mom will return soon. Instead, follow the saying, “If you care, leave it there.”