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Some small towns and villages like East Hampton, N.Y., are turning their backs on hunting to cull burgeoning deer populations, and are looking toward a more sterile approach.
The East Hampton village board has funded a doe sterilization program to help reduce the deer population in its 5-square mile limits. The plan is to capture deer at night using tranquilizer darts, transport them to a veterinarian who will remove the does’ ovaries, rinse, and repeat.
East Hampton officials may hire White Buffalo Inc., a nonprofit, for the job, Newsday reports. The organization, headed by Tony DeNicola, has performed similar efforts at five sites across the country — including Fairfax, Va., a project that the Humane Society of the United States supported with a $3,000 donation. DeNicola said a team can sterilize about 15 to 20 does a night.
The village board will contribute $30,000 to the program, which will begin in January. But the Village Preservation Society of East Hampton, a civic organization that pushed the program, is looking for an additional $100,000 in donations. The sterilization is estimated to cost about $1,000 per deer.