Salem, Ore.— Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife officials announced today that the results of the DNA test on the black-tailed buck that was illegally held captive by a Molalla family, positively identify the buck as the offspring of the doe.
State wildlife veterinarians wanted confirmation of the test results before moving forward with a planned vasectomy of the buck. The minor procedure will keep him from passing on genes with the doe’s deformities.
State wildlife veterinarians plan to release the buck into the wild as early as Friday. However, the release could be delayed until the following week because of the projected inclement weather in the release area.
“We are doing everything we can to help the buck successfully transition to the wild,” explained state wildlife veterinarian Peregrine Wolff. “Rather than releasing him when the weather is cold, wet and windy, we will wait until the weather is better.”
In the meantime, veterinarians continue to limit human contact while the buck forages in a more remote, natural environment. The buck is a good candidate for release because he is strong and demonstrates the instincts necessary to survive in its natural habitat.
State wildlife biologists remind Oregonians that, if you care about young wildlife, leave them in the wild. Every year, well-intentioned Oregonians “rescue” young animals and birds they believe have been abandoned, greatly reducing the animal's chance of survival. If you believe an animal or bird is in danger or seriously hurt, call a local ODFW office or the Oregon State Police.
The deer will be released into the Bull Run Watershed. The watershed drains about 102 square miles of forested landscape and is home to almost 250 species of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish. The area requires special permits to enter, has a resident deer population, and is off-limits to hunters.
Prior to the release, state wildlife veterinarians will perform a vasectomy on the animal to keep him from passing on genes with the doe’s deformities.