A collapsed baby deer was ‘brought back to life’ with an oxygen mask after being rescued from a raging moor fire by firefighters and the RSPCA.
RSPCA inspector Daniel Bradshaw was called to moorland off Sand Lane, in Wroot, near Doncaster, on Wednesday afternoon (20 May) by fire crews who had been tackling the fire for three days.
He said: “There were eight fire engines and crews on the scene from across Lincolnshire and South Yorkshire trying to tackle the blaze.
“When they were fighting the flames they came across this tiny roe deer kid curled up in the shrubs and pulled her to safety but she soon collapsed and stopped breathing so they put an oxygen mask over her nose.
“The fire was huge and the crews did an incredible job getting this terrified little kid to safety and helping her when she was struggling to breathe. I’m certain they brought her back to life and without their quick-thinking actions she may well have perished.”
The fire, thought to have started naturally, had been burning since Sunday (17 May) across a vast area of Hatfield Moors.
Daniel collected the tiny kid and took her to a wildlife expert for emergency overnight boarding before she’s moved to the RSPCA’s Stapeley Grange Wildlife Centre in Cheshire for specialist rehabilitation.
He added: “It looks as though she’s between three and seven days old and is unweaned. She was found right at the heart of the fire so I suspect mum has run away and she’s now been orphaned.
“I’d like to say a big thank you to the fire crews and, particularly, to the Epworth Fire Brigade who gave her the oxygen and kept her safe until I arrived and helped to get her back on her feet.
“She now seems to be doing much better, is quite bright and alert which is wonderful. But she’s not out of the woods yet and the next few days will be touch and go as she’s so young.”
Baby deer are normally left alone from an early age for long periods of time. Their mother will return to feed them but the fire is likely to have scared this baby’s mum away.
The kid will now be reared by staff at the charity’s wildlife centre before she is old enough to be released back into the wild.
To help the RSPCA keep rescuing animals like these and keep our animal hospitals and centres running for emergency treatment and round the clock care through these unprecedented times, please donate whatever you can spare at www.rspca.org.uk/covid.