A local resident and conservation officers in Smithers were able to rescue a mule deer buck from the icy waters of Seymour Lake yesterday after they received a tip from a resident.
The call came into the Conservation Office Service (COS) RAPP (Report All Poachers and Polluters line) and an officer was dispatched.
In the interim, the resident acted quickly heading out in his boat to break up the thin layer of ice that has only recently formed on Seymour and other area lakes.
When the conservation officer (CO) arrived the resident was already attempting to guide the unfortunate deer back to shore.
“A Conservation Officer (CO) who rushed to the area tossed a ‘throw bag’ (a piece of boating safety equipment COs also keep in their trucks) out to help guide the animal to shore by looping it through its antlers,” a COS Facebook post said. “The deer made its way to the edge of shore and was hauled out, and the rope removed.”
They wrapped the animal up in blankets to recover and within an hour watched it walk away.
The COS said they do get occasional calls of animals falling through the ice, but this is the first call for Smithers this season.
Although this story had a happy ending, the COS also expressed concern about people putting themselves in danger.
“The BCCOS would like to remind the public to not put themselves in danger by attempting to rescue animals in such situations, and instead call the RAPP line,” the Facebook post said.