Beavers set to be released as Green Minds project launched

A family of beavers is set to be released in the Forder Valley as part of an exciting new nature scheme.

The Green Minds project, which launches on Monday, seeks to re-wild urban parks, gardens and verges, introduce a new system of working with partners and crucially, encourage more people from all walks to life, to enjoy the health benefits that our green spaces provide.

It is funded thanks to €4million grant from the European Regional Development Fund under their Urban Innovation Actions Programme and includes the University of Plymouth, Real Ideas Organisation, Plymouth College of Art, Devon Wildlife Trust, The Data Place and the National Trust as partners.

The beavers, who are coming from Scotland, will be introduced to a specially-built re-wilding enclosure near Poole Farm with their activity monitored to access how their behaviour and actions reduce flooding and habitats for wildlife further downstream.

It is the first urban release of beavers in the UK.

Although clearly the headline event, the beavers are just a small part of the overall project as Councillor Sue Dann, Cabinet member for Street Scene and the Environment, explains.

"Our climate is changing and so must we," said Councillor Dann. "Through Green Minds, we want to find new ways of working with resident and partners which both compliment and embrace our natural environment.

"Introducing beavers is just a small part of that and we've got several other projects coming up in the next few years that make nature matter to the residents of Plymouth. 

"If we can look after our people, their mental and physical health, they can help look after our place, our parks and our seas which brings us all together so that we can look after the planet.”

As part of the Green Minds launch, a number of online and virtual activities are set to take place that residents can get involved with. 

Rewilding Plymouth 

Action for Insects
Act now to save insects!

Free activities, information and resources here:
www.devonwildlifetrust.org/take-action/action-insects
www.wildlifetrusts.org/take-action-insects
www.wildlifetrusts.org/take-action-insects-your-school

Living Lab
Join us to find out how we are revealing nature in Central Park through digital technology. What stories can data tell us about nature in the park?
Saturday 17 October 10am-12noon
Drop in by the Meadows Café, Central Park to be part of a Covid-secure, socially distant activity.
www.eventbrite.com/e/living-lab-tickets-122678993171 

Webinars

Meet the Rebel Botanists!
Monday 12 October 6.30pm
www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/122556536901 

Nature Based Solutions in a Growing City
Building with nature in mind: Plymouth’s green/blue aspirations and investing in nature for
health. Speakers from Plymouth City Council, European Centre for Environment and Human Health and Building with Nature.
Tuesday 13 October 11.30am
www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/122576273935 

Beaver Fever
Find out our plans to bring beavers back to Plymouth and support nature based solutions. Led by Devon Wildlife Trust.
Wednesday 14 October 11am
www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/122553716465 

Natural change
Role of leadership in creating systemic change. Case studies from Plymouth, Cornwall and
Scotland. With Natural Change: Sustainability Leadership and Public Health Plymouth.
Friday 16 October 12noon
www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/122557734483 

Eco-Biz
Meet the new wave of Plymouth businesses restoring nature with Real Ideas Organisation.
Tuesday 20 October 2020, 11am-12noon
http://register.gotowebinar.com/register/2532500044384443407    

More on the Green Minds project can be found here: www.plymouth.gov.uk/parksnatureandgreenspaces/parksprojects/greenminds