Juno only appeared to be lying down on the job, lazily munching a snack at the community solar farm on Thursday.
Juno, a Suffolk sheep, was actually being productive, as one of a herd of 15 “lambscapers” from Solar Shepherd LLC that were grazing on the fescue, grapevine and crabgrass surrounding a field of solar panels.
The sheep were brought in a few days ago to manage vegetation naturally around the 4,212 panels covering 20 acres, on 160 acres of Varney Farm property, 128 Providence St.
Sheep are being tried for the first time on a solar project in Massachusetts at the Mendon farm, although they’re used elsewhere, to control grass surrounding solar arrays that would otherwise require mowing or, more typically, herbicide application.
The community solar farm, which produces approximately 5.1 million kilowatt hours per year, enough to power 405 homes annually, is owned and operated by Ameresco and co-developed by BlueWave Solar. The project has 38 community solar customers, including two anchor tenants, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts and the town of Mendon, according to information provided by developers.