Baby Animals and Spring
As spring approaches, so does baby animal season. At the Remington Nature Center, staff receive several inquiries each year concerning baby wildlife found in homeowners’ yards or in other unexpected places. These animals often appear abandoned or in need of assistance. However, this is usually not the case.
The animals in question are usually baby birds and bunnies. Baby birds fledge once they have outgrown their nest. These fledglings bounce around on the ground for a few days before taking flight. It is at this time humans encounter them and mistakenly think they are orphaned or injured. This is likely not the case as these babies are being looked after by their parents who are keeping a watchful eye nearby.
Baby bunnies are usually found when the nest is uncovered by mowing or when a dog gently carries a baby bunny and drops it at your feet. Bunnies are born in depressions in the ground covered by debris and mom’s fur. Mama rabbit will return to the nest twice a day to feed her young. If you spot an adult rabbit sitting for a prolonged period in your yard, she may be sitting atop a nest nursing. Bunnies are fully weaned at two to three weeks old and are about the size of a tennis ball.
If you encounter a wild animal, please leave it where you find it. If you have pets, you might restrain them or bring them inside until the baby bird or bunny leaves. Taking wildlife into your home, even with the best of intentions, is not only unethical, but also illegal. If you have questions about whether an animal is truly in need or not, please contact Shelly Cox at the Remington Nature Center at 271-5499.