FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 11, 2018
MEDIA CONTACTS: Carole Trottere, Rebecca Cheng, Vicki DiStefano and Matt Leonenko | (516) 869-7794
North Hempstead Announces ‘Quail-Venture 2018’
Town will once again raise Northern Bobwhite quail for tick control on Town-owned land
Watch live streaming of egg hatching on Town’s QUAIL CAM!
North Hempstead, NY – Last year the Town of North Hempstead hatched and raised a small batch of Northern Bobwhite Quail at the North Hempstead TV Studio in Westbury and released them in parks. It was a successful pilot program aimed at hatching, raising and releasing the tick-eating quail back into the local environment, in order to effectively reduce the numbers of ticks naturally. Once again this year, Town Supervisor Judi Bosworth says the Town will hatch about 60 quail from eggs and stream it live on the Town’s website. Watch the live “Quail Cam” here: northhempsteadny.gov/quailcam to see the hatching of the quail eggs.
“Last year’s pilot quail program was very successful and we are excited about raising quail and awareness once again to help reduce the number of disease-causing ticks,” said the Supervisor. “Lyme disease is a very serious condition caused by deer ticks, which are prevalent in wooded areas and grasslands all over Long Island and the Town is constantly on the lookout for natural methods we can use to control disease-causing pests that do not involve using toxic chemicals. The fact that we also get to raise the quail ourselves and enjoy watching the eggs hatch, that is just part of the fun and a tremendous educational opportunity for our residents.”
The quail program was designed by biologist Ranger Eric Powers, the host of the Town’s award-winning TV series Off The Trail. North Hempstead was the first municipality to participate in the quail program. Each year dozens of school-aged children raise quail in their classrooms and then release the quail in nearby parkland.
An incubator containing approximately 60 quail eggs is stationed at the Town’s TV station, NHTV at the “Yes We Can” Community Center. When the eggs hatch, sometime later this week, the baby quail will be kept at the studio for about another two weeks, then they will join the other purchased chicks in a larger “flight pen” where they will mature further. Sometime in July all the birds will be released in the Town’s 200 wooded acres across from the North Hempstead Beach Park and also along the Hempstead Harbor Trail. Their mission? To eat ticks!
The Town’s NHTV Quail Cam is streaming live now and the action will really start once the eggs begin to hatch around sometime in June. Like us on Facebook to get updates on this first-ever extraordinary, event.
Northern Bobwhite Quail’s populations have been decimated on Long Island over the years due to their number one predator--feral and indoor-outdoor cats!
“Cats take a massive toll on our ground-dwelling wildlife, such as bobwhite quail, which turns out to be our front line of defense against ticks,” Powers said. “So the biggest help anyone can do is to keep your cats inside. If the community wants my help re-establishing quail populations around Long Island to combat ticks then I need your help in return…please keep your cats inside.”
The NHTV station is not the only place incubating quail eggs. Mr. Powers also works with dozens of schools across Long Island who set up incubators in their classrooms and raise the quail as part of their animal life cycle studies that teaches science, environmental studies and responsible stewardship. To join the spring-time Quail vs Ticks Study visit Ranger Eric’s website at www.YC2N.com.
For more information call the Town’s 311 Call Center.
Have you tuned into North Hempstead TV lately? View all of our great programming on Channels 18 or 63 on Cablevision or Channel 46 on Verizon, or visit www.myNHTV.com or www.youtube.com/townofnorthhempstead.
Quails are released last year along the North Hempstead Harbor Trail.
Quail eggs are just a week away from hatching in this incubator at the NHTV studio