Long Island farmer releasing birds that eat ticks

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Abra Morawiec raises and sells organic quail for meat and eggs. The owner of Feisty Acres Farm in Jamesport, Long Island, is also working to help preserve the local ecosystem.

She recently started raising and releasing bobwhite quail, a species known to eat ticks. She hopes to restore a dying breed once native to the East End. She says the birds will eat deer ticks, lone star ticks, and dog ticks and that will hopefully ameliorate the tick problem on Long Island.

The baby quail are housed inside a surrogator specially designed with a water system and propane heater. The bobwhites are released when they're 5 to 6 weeks old. This gives them more time to adapt to their natural surroundings. It also increases their chances of mating for the next season.

Morawiec say that the quail will pair off in spring, mate and reproduce and in the fall they'll pair up and survive in the winter together.

So far she has released 120 bobwhite quail and hopes to work with nature preserves to make it a long-term project.