Each April, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources sends out a call for volunteers to help with our annual fawn collaring effort. Due to COVID-19, we will no longer be recruiting volunteers this year.
The health and safety of our volunteers and staff is always our priority. Although searching for fawns outside, volunteer search groups can be quite large and have close contact between individuals.
For those wondering how this decision impacts our study, we do have some good news. Luckily, we were successful enough during our first three years (in large part thanks to our volunteers) that we have a sufficient sample size to analyze. We were hoping to gather more data during our final capture season, but our volunteers have already helped us collar enough fawns to ensure the success of the project despite this change in plans.
If guidance changes before fawns are born, research staff may attempt a smaller-scale fawn collaring initiative later in the Spring, taking appropriate measures to reduce virus transmission risk. However, no volunteers are needed if this initiative occurs.
In the meantime, we hope you’ll stay subscribed to this newsletter. We’ll continue to share what we learn from everyone’s hard work these last three years.
We thank you for your patience and cooperation as we all go through the COVID-19 emergency together and apologize for any inconvenience.