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Got a few hours on two Sundays next month to spend outdoors in Amherst?

Counting deer?

The Humane Society of the United States, in cooperation with the Town of Amherst and the state Department of Environmental Conservation, plans to take a census of deer and needs the help of adults in good physical condition.

An organization and information meeting for those interested in volunteering is scheduled for 7 p.m. Thursday in Amherst Town Hall, 5583 Main St., Williamsville.

The deer census itself will be conducted at two sites:

Sunday in the Great Baehre Swamp off Hopkins Road, the site selected by the Humane Society for research on using a contraceptive vaccine to help control deer populations nationwide.

Oct. 19 on the University at Buffalo North Campus, the control site for the study.

The census will become an important part of a database of the deer population in Amherst, said S. Bruce Kohrn, project supervisor.

The information will be used in the Humane Society's five-year research project exploring the use of the contraceptive vaccine on deer.

Amherst was chosen as one of several sites across the nation for this research, Kohrn noted.

The town itself will use the census to develop and carry out its own deer management plan, officials said.

"The deer census will be strenuous, and only adults in good health will be allowed to participate," Kohrn said. "Volunteers should expect to spend the morning and early afternoon on site."

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