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Green Visions
A Northland Morning feature focusing on local environmental issues, heard Wednesdays at 8:20 a.m. Green Visions is brought to you by All Energy Solar, Minnesota Power Energy Conservation Program, and Energy Plus.

Green Visions: Keeping Wildlife Wild with Jenna Fastner

Two spotted fawns amid green growth turn toward the camera
Darcy [via Flickr]

Imagine you're on a lovely spring hike in the woods. You come across a fawn, all alone, and mom is nowhere to be seen. You might be flooded with the empathetic instincts to help, but what should you really do?

Particularly during the spring, the Wisconsin DNR and other wildlife organizations are encouraging and teaching the importance of leaving animals alone and thus keeping wildlife wild. "There's a lot of worry sometimes by individuals who really care and want to get an animal some help," says Jenna Fastner, the Captive Wildlife Health Specialist for the Wisconsin DNR.

One of the most common misperceptions is that a young animal alone has been abandoned. "Most animals are going to be alone for most of the day, from fawns to cottontail rabbits." This is largely a defensive approach to caring for young - keeping the kids hidden keeps them out of harm's way.

Put simply, most animals are doing what they need to do, and they don't require human intervention. It's okay to feel that desire to help, but it might be that doing nothing at all is the most helpful thing you could do.

If you do come across an injured animal or a situation that may necessitate rehabilitation, take video and photos, then contact the appropriate authority. There are several local resources, including the Wisconsin DNR website, the Minnesota DNR website, and Wildwoods in Duluth.

You can hear Green Visions at 8:20am every Wednesday on Northland Morning.

Luke Moravec is the host for Northland Morning on The North 103.3. He’s also a local actor, musician and writer. He loves puzzles, riddles and fun mysteries.
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