Injured or Abandoned Baby Birds?
It’s fine to gently replace a baby that has clearly left the nest too soon; the parents will still care for their offspring (most birds have no sense of smell, so you needn’t be concerned about leaving your scent on the young). However, in many cases stronger chicks have actually forced a younger or weaker sibling from the nest. That way, the bird(s) most likely to survive receive the most food.
Also, some birds—such as owls—leave the nest before they can fly. It’s perfectly normal to see them flopping around on the ground, and they should not be disturbed.
Fawns are often left in a safe place by the mother while she forages. Leave them alone; she will return to care for them.
Unfortunately, our local wildlife rehabilitation centers have all closed due to lack of funding. We’ve been given the names of two people who may be able to help: Rhetta, (703) 798-4320, and Aurora Magee, (719) 392-7122. Heather Brown, who lives in Parker, was referred to Aiken as someone who is currently doing rehab: (303) 667-7174. And finally, Second Chance, in Pueblo, may be another option. We provide these names and numbers for your convenience; they are not associated with or recommended by Aiken Audubon.
Finally, remember that it’s illegal to keep most wild animals without a permit.