Saint Blassin: The Game Watcher raises orphaned deer

It often happens that hikers take their costumes with them when they see them alone in the woods because they think they are abandoned or orphaned animals. Meanwhile, Daniel Sabouré realizes whether or not the animal really needs rescuing: The Albtäler is a retired forester, hunter, wildlife conservationist and now, retired, ranger at St. Blasen Reserve. He has raised many orphaned animals or given them to others.

He warns non-professionals of good will not to simply take the elk with them, as the mother is usually not far away. Daniel Saboret explains that mother animals put their young in a sheltered place, and go away to graze until their hungry young call them with a specific suckling screech, which happens about every two hours. “It’s only an emergency if you don’t show up after three hours,” he says. You should not take a healthy deer from a healthy umm deer, this is a criminal offense and poaching.

But how do you act correctly? If you spot a wild animal that is presumably defenseless, do not go near it under any circumstances. The caregiver also urgently warns against touching the antelope, because the doe then refuses to nurse the antelope due to the human scent transmitted to the antelope and the animal dies of starvation. Only in emergency situations does the antelope need human help and justify the fawning. “For example, if the mother animal dies, you have to assume that the mother is no longer feeding her guess or she has been infected and will die in the wild.”

If in doubt, you should contact your local fisherman, municipality or police. In Subaret’s house there are two deer that he raised himself. The animals that were brought to him ten years ago live like family members. They sleep in the living room, each with their own blanket and their own space. Early in the morning, the animals move through the always open door to a fenced outdoor enclosure of one hectare.

The elk raised by Daniel Sabbouret cannot be released into the wild and now lives with his family which also includes dogs...

The elk that Daniel Saborette raised cannot be released into the wild and now lives with his family, which also includes dogs. | Photo: Daniel Sabbouret

He explains that raising a wild animal is a complex issue and the demands should not be underestimated. Nutrition, care, and medical care requires specialized knowledge, is time consuming and sometimes expensive. “If you take a falsehood that has been found, you take over all the missions of mercy,” explains Daniel Saboret.

First, the state of health must be clarified, then the milk supply begins. Goat’s milk containing at least 3.5 percent fat is on the menu. He explains that improper feeding, such as cow’s milk, would harm the young animal. The temperature of the milk should not fall below 40 degrees. This must be strictly adhered to because the deer’s body temperature is between 38.5 and 39.5 degrees.

Daniel Sabbouret

Daniel Sabbouret | Photo: Susan Felt

The alarm goes off practically every two hours and it’s time for the next bottle. After a few weeks, the feeding rhythm increases to three or four hours – day and night. Accurate records should be kept of each bottle feeding so that milk feedings can finally be stopped after a good six months.

Hygiene is the top priority when breastfeeding. If the milk is heated twice because the antelope does not want to drink at first, it must be destroyed. Because milk is so high in fat, it’s not easy to clean the bottle, says Saboret.

For him, the heart would raise an orphan Dawn, he says. He always felt attracted to animals, helped hedgehogs, mice and pigeons. However, he cannot keep all the orphans, and therefore he gives them to other expert animal lovers. In recent years, the phone has been ringing less frequently due to finding a fawn. Even ten years ago, he often had to find good hands for ten gazelles a year.

game reserve

If you want to see the indigenous animals of the Black Forest, we recommend a visit to Saint Blasin Game Reserve. The facility is located in Muchenländerweg, a few minutes’ walk from the city centre. The game reserve is open all year round. Submission is free. There is also a children’s playground with cable cars, slide and swing, and a barbecue area with a shelter right next to the game reserve. The Game Reserve and all of its facilities are sponsored and maintained by a non-profit association, the Wildlife Sanctuary Promotion Association, and volunteers. Retired guard Daniel Saboret is the facility’s guard.

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