Children shine light on solar farm wildlife
Children were all a flutter when they made a special visit to one of Dorset’s newest solar farms recently.
From butterflies to wildflowers, the youngsters from Wool Primary, Bovington Primary and St Mary and Joseph's First School explored the varied wildlife flourishing at Good Energy's Woolbridge Solar Farm.
It was the first time the children had returned to the site since they helped plant new trees there a few months ago.
During this latest visit they were joined by professional ecologist Hannah Montag who led the children on a butterfly hunt and helped them to build a hibernaculum for reptiles, amphibians and invertebrates.
Hugo House, from Good Energy, said: “It was great to welcome back the children to our Woolbridge solar farm so they could see how the trees they planted have come into leaf and are beginning to grow.
“We have this great opportunity to nurture and enhance wildlife on our solar farms and we love showing the children how this works in practice. As well as planting new trees, we have also planted new hedgerow and a meadow full of Dorset wildflowers. This will create new habitat for local butterfly and bee populations, native birds and small mammals like hedgehogs.
“Together with low intensity sheep grazing amongst the panels, this will enhance the biodiversity of this site for years to come.”
During their visit, the school pupils were challenged to find out more about the butterflies and wildflowers on site using worksheets provided by Butterfly Conservation.
Butterfly Conservation Project Officer, Megan Lowe, said: “It was a great opportunity for the local children to return to the site and learn more about the wildlife that now calls it home.
“We found butterflies like the Orange-tip and Brimstone, which were enjoying the plants the children had helped sow in the winter months. It's very important for children to learn about our pollinators and what they can do to help them.”
Good Energy have also organised a creative competition for the visiting children to enter. They’ve challenged the pupils to write articles and draw pictures depicting life on a solar farm from the point of view of a bee, butterfly or small creature. The winning entry from each school will receive a prize, and there will be a special prize for the overall winner, donated by Good Energy's partners, the National Trust.
Notes to editors
- More than 2000 new trees, including a variety of native species such as English oak and field maple, plus 7,000 hedgerow plants have been added to the existing mature plants at Woolbridge.
- Good Energy has also installed bird and bat boxes, the wildlife hibernaculum and a new grassland and wildflower meadow.
- Woolbridge, which began operating last summer, has 18,500 solar panels on a 34-acre site.
- The solar farm is capable of generating more than 5,500 MWh of electricity every year - that’s enough power for around 1,500 average homes
About Good Energy www.goodenergy.co.uk
Good Energy is a fast-growing green energy company, generating and selling 100% renewable electricity to homes and businesses across the UK, all wrapped up in great customer service. Our mission is to support change in the energy market, tackle climate change and boost energy security. Good Energy has consistently been ranked top or second in Which? energy company customer satisfaction surveys for the past four years. Good Energy invests in renewable energy including wind, solar, hydro and tidal.
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