‘Flying flock’ part of flower meadow plan

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VITAL conservation work has been carried out at a nature reserve in Annesley Woodhouse which will help wildflowers bloom in the area.

Workers from Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust have been repairing and extending fencing at the nature area, which is off Salmon Lane. They have also been preparing the land for a wildflower meadow.

The project, which first started in March last year, includes a ‘flying flock’ of sheep (pictured) which has been brought in to eat plants and leave space for wildflowers to grow.

In addition, the Wildlife Trust has replaced the fence along the roadside where it has been repeatedly damaged by cars that have driven into it and has also bought a camera to monitor wildlife in the area.

The project has been made possible thanks to a £5,902 grant from Biffaward, which offers funds to community and environmental projects.

Ruth Testa, who is reserves officer with the trust, said: “We are delighted about this project being completed. The grant from Biffaward has made a real difference to this haven for wildlife.

“Our grazing sheep are now able to help us improve the area so that wildflowers can flourish in the future.”

And Biffaward Programme Manager Gillian French said: “Biffaward is delighted to support organisations like Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust who work tirelessly to conserve our natural environment.

“The work carried out on this nature reserve will bring important benefits to the land, encouraging wildlife to thrive and improving the landscape.”

Grazing sheep are an important part of the Wildlife Trust’s conservation work and Hebridean sheep have been selected because they are bred to cope in the barren and often harsh atmosphere of the Hebridean isles in Scotland.

The fact that they can eat coarse grasses and young tree seedlings means Hebrideans are one of the most effective breeds for conservation.

After almost dying out, the trust’s flock of sheep is one of the largest pure-bred flocks in the world.