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Every spring people come across young deer alone in the undergrowth and some worry that these young animals have been abandoned by their mothers. 

This is not the case; the young deer has been carefully hidden while the mother is feeding close by.

Even if the mother does not appear to be in sight this does not mean that she has abandoned her offspring. Deer are naturally cautious of humans and the only thing stopping her returning to her young is the presence of people.

Most species of deer give birth between May and July, although muntjac can breed all year round. This is why it is more common to find hidden young deer in the Spring.

WHAT to do if you find a young deer

It is normal for a mother to leave a young deer hidden because it cannot keep up with her when she is feeding. As a young deer has little or no scent it is well-protected from predators if it lies still and the mother will return every two to three hours to feed it both day and night.

If you find a fawn, kid or calf:

Hand-rearing young deer is not usually successful. Those that have been successfully hand-reared often do not thrive after re-release into the wild.

HELP keep young deer safe and spread the word by displaying our abandoned young poster!

UK Deer Birth Dates Survey

Are you aware that climate change can affect deer? The British Deer Society is conducting a survey in order to understand how deer are being affected by their environment.
We want to know when you first saw kids/calves/fawns this year, including the species and area.
Join this survey and help the British Deer Society understand how deer are being affected by climate change and how their birth dates may be changing.
Please submit an individual return for each deer species you see.

The survey contains 7 questions and takes around 3 minutes to complete.

Scan the QR code to take the survey.

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