FRANKFORT, Ky. (FOX 56) — It is springtime once again in the Bluegrass, and that means a high volume of baby animals are being welcomed into the world. Odds are many Kentuckians will come across lone wildlife during the upcoming months, and that begs the question: should I help them or leave them alone?

The Kentucky Department of Fish and wild life have a straightforward answer — leave all young wildlife alone. Not only is it illegal to take young animals from their mothers, but it is harmful to them.

Many individuals believe they are “rescuing” the lone animal when in fact many species like deer and rabbits will leave their offspring alone for periods of time, only to return to take care of them.

The department said if you discover a young bird or mammal without its mother you should keep children and pets away and not handle the wildlife. By doing so, you increase the likelihood that the animal’s mother comes back to take care of it.

Conservation laws prohibit holding native wildlife as pets unless it is obtained from a legal source and you hold a captive wildlife permit.