Give Wildlife a Break

While hundreds of thousands of people are out hunting for organic food in the great state of Colorado, residents need to remember their responsibilities toward wildlife. Colorado Parks and Wildlife is sending us a reminder that as animals prepare for winter, we should as well. Remember, whether you’re a hunter or not, you need to do your part in conserving wildlife populations. ~Mia

Give wildlife a break – time to put yard toys, equipment into storage

DURANGO, Colo. – With warm weather now behind us for the year, Colorado Parks and Wildlife urges residents to take down equipment and yard toys that cause problems for wildlife.


Recently in Durango, a young buck deer became tangled in a hammock which broke off an antler and part of its skull. A resident reported seeing the deer, but wildlife officers were not able to find the animal.

Get outside. Explore, learn, hunt, fish, shoot, connect with nature. ~Mia

“When we looked at the antler we knew the deer had sustained a very serious injury,” said Matt Thorpe, area wildlife manager in Durango.

At this time of year buck deer are especially active because the mating season is approaching. It’s common for deer to get tangled in hammocks, volleyball nets, swing sets, tire swings, clothes lines, yard decorations, garden fencing, tomato cages, buckets, etc. Those items should be stored for the winter or covered and secured.

“Deer can end up with almost anything on their antlers,” Thorpe said. “We’ve even had deer with bicycles on their antlers.”

Every year holiday lights also end up as decorations on the heads of deer. Lights should be attached tightly to a building, to a post or fence and not just draped over trees or shrubs. Hang lights more than six feet above the ground to prevent an unexpected disappearance of those expensive decorations.

If you see an animal tangled in a net or decorations, please call the near CPW office or local law enforcement. Do not approach the animal or attempt to remove items. An animal does not understand that you are trying to help it and can be very dangerous in that type of circumstance.

CPW is an enterprise agency, relying primarily on license sales, state parks fees and registration fees to support its operations, including: 42 state parks and more than 350 wildlife areas covering approximately 900,000 acres, management of fishing and hunting, wildlife watching, camping, motorized and non-motorized trails, boating and outdoor education. CPW’s work contributes approximately $6 billion in total economic impact annually throughout Colorado.