BELLINGHAM - A baby deer whose mother likely was killed by a car in Bellingham has found a happy ending at an Arlington wildlife rescue center.
The 2-month-old fawn was rescued by Washington State Patrol Trooper Scott Brown. He came across the fawn Tuesday, July 10, when he responded to a report of a deer struck and killed by a car near the Northwest Avenue exit on Interstate 5.
When Brown arrived at the scene just before 7 p.m., the other deer in the area stayed back, but the orphaned fawn ran up to him and wouldn't leave. It nuzzled against him and started "mewing," said Trooper Mark Francis.
Brown wasn't quite sure what to do next, so he picked up the deer and loaded it into his cruiser, snapping a photo before driving it down to an animal shelter in Arlington.
The fawn came in to the Sarvey Wildlife Care Center "severely dehydrated" but is doing better, said Suzanne West, executive director of the center.
"So far, so good," West said.
West wasn't totally sure if the adult deer, killed by a truck, was the fawn's mother. But it's possible, she said. The fawn also had some minor injuries - no broken bones, but it may have been clipped by the truck.
Workers at the wildlife center don't name the animals, because they don't want to get too attached. And they wear hoods during feeding, so fawns don't get the idea humans will care for them.
"We want them to stay wild," West said.
If the rehabilitation is successful, it will probably take until May 2013 before the deer can be released back into the wild.
The fawn has a deer buddy to help in recovery, West said, because "fawns don't do well in isolation."
HOW TO HELP
Sarvey Wildlife Care Center will accept donations to help care for the fawn at its website, sarveywildlife.org. Further updates on the deer can be found on the center's Facebook page. More photos of the rescued fawn can be found on The Dispatcher blog at blogs.bellinghamherald.com/dispatcher.