Members of the Livonia Fire Department rescued a deer this morning that had fallen through ice on Conesus Lake.
The rescue was undertaken about 8:15 a.m. in the 4700 block of East Lake Road after the department was advised of multiple calls reporting the deer was through the ice.
Fire Chief Rich Alexander, in a Facebook post, said the department would not normally attempt such a rescue, but while he was on scene investigating the call several community members were talking about and attempting to make the rescue. The chief did not want to see any members of the community put themselves in danger and decided the fire department would attempt a rescue.
“While we receive multiple calls like this on a yearly basis we typically do not put our members in a dangerous situation to make this type of rescue,” Alexander wrote.
The fire chief asked community members to refrain from entering the lake while he assembled a crew. Five firefighters responded to the scene with proper equipment. The firefighters, along with members of the Livingston County Sheriff’s Office and state Department of Environmental Conservation came up with a plan to safely extract the animal from the lake without harm to first responders, according to Alexander.
The rescue was successful and the deer rested on solid ice while attempting to regain energy to return to shore and its natural habitat.
However, in an update Sunday afternoon, Alexander noted that the deer was too severely injured and was dispatched by state DEC.
The deer was taken for human consumption by a neighbor, the fire department said.
“Unfortunately it is not the outcome that anyone wants to see or hear but the safety of our community and our members are our number 1 priority,” Alexander wrote in the update.
The Livingston County Sheriff’s Office responded to the scene due to the amount of traffic that had backed up in the area and the number of onlookers.
The department also reminded residents not to attempt such rescues themselves.