The Greenway is a great place to see a variety of wildlife in an urban setting. Early morning trail users are often treated to the sight of white-tail deer within the park. And how who hasn’t been humbled by the beauty of seeing bald eagles soaring into the bright blue skies? The location next to the Red and Red Lake Rivers provides the perfect opportunity to view many different species of birds in their natural habitat. These sightings can be an exciting experience but not every encounter increases the potential for injury or death to wildlife.
Many of these animals leave the Greenway in search of food and that’s when the problems begin. This increases the chances for collisions with vehicles and property damage to homes and gardens.
Please help us protect these beautiful animals by not providing extra feeding opportunities. Feeding deer and other wildlife in the Greenway is prohibited by law on both sides of the river. This ban is designed for the protection of the deer humans, and personal property. Providing extra food discourages natural foraging instincts and can be unhealthy for the deer. It also lures deer from their natural habitat into areas with high concentrations of people and motor vehicles, which increases the chances for a collision between the deer and a motor vehicle. How can you help?
Be aware of your surroundings. Be alert to animal activity on and near roads adjacent to the river. Each fall increased sightings of deer leaving the woods and mingling in the neighborhood.
Keep pet food indoors. Opportunistic wildlife are always on the lookout for easy food options.
Don’t leave food in the Greenway.
Sick, Injured or Ophaned Animals Each year greenway staff receives reports of animals that have been sick, injured, or orphaned in the Greenway. Unfortunately, we do not have the staff or resources to respond to every injured or distressed wildlife report. The public is encouraged to contact local law enforcement at 911 and dispatch will determine who to contact based on the situation. Sometimes letting nature take its course is the best option. From our friends at the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources: Dead or dying animals provide an important food source for many species of wildlife. While it is sometimes difficult to witness life and death in nature, a good phrase to keep in mind is, "If you care, leave it there."
NOTE: If you see multiple dead, dying, or sick wildlife found in close proximity contact local law enforcement at 911 as this might be related to larger-scale disease outbreaks or poisoning. Some helpful resources from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources: