Janet Schwartz thinks of Bimbo as her baby. A baby that happens to be a five-year-old deer.
But the provincial Environment Ministry says the Ucluelet woman can’t legally keep wildlife as a pet, and is asking Schwartz to release the doe back into the wild — or to an animal-rehabilitation centre.
“I love her and I don’t want to lose her,” said Schwartz, who lives in the bush near Mussel Beach.
Schwartz found Bimbo on the side of the highway five years ago near Ucluelet — home to many roaming deer — beside the fawn’s dead mother. Bimbo has lived with her ever since, along with Schwartz’s boyfriend, two dogs, a cat and an outdoor goat.