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Billy & Christie Offer Lyme Disease Prevention

September 4, 1990

EAST HAMPTON, N.Y. (AP) _ Oh, that Christie Brinkley. Cover girl, married to Billy Joel, mother of a beautiful daughter - and now she’s figured out a way to fight Lyme disease.

Brinkley is raising guinea hens on her Long Island estate, and she believes the fowl are eating the deer ticks on her land. The ticks are carriers of potentially fatal Lyme disease, which has struck Suffolk County harder than any other county in the state this summer.

When the actress-model told Rep. George Hochbrueckner about the hens on patrol, the congressman quickly seized the (photo) opportunity.

Brinkley and Joel will soon be hosts to the congressman and a team of researchers who want to determine if the deer tick population is lower on the celebrity property than at the neighbors’ homes.

The New York Democrat said the researchers also will take some of the hens back to a laboratory to see if the animals can tell the difference between dog ticks and deer ticks.

Brinkley told Hochbrueckner she noticed the number of deer ticks dropped after she let the hens wander around the property.

Hochbrueckner said the guinea hens are used in Africa to keep ticks out of barnyards.

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