MOUNT Alexander Shire has adopted its environmental plan which focuses on the natural beauty of the Castlemaine Botanical Flora and Fauna Reserve and how to protect it, as well as a proposed ban and other restrictions on dogs in some areas of the municipality.
The plan calls for dogs to be on a leash in the park and Castlemaine CBD and other areas, and ban them all together in others.
Councillor Rosie Annear said it would be "difficult" and challenging to ban dogs and bikes, as most people bring pets and ride their bikes in the park.
The reserve is an iconic and significant part of Castlemaine and the region, and provides a unique ecological environment to support a number of native flora and fauna.
The plan is designed to protect the indigenous and valuable plants and animals in the park, including the Eltham Copper Butterfly.
The butterfly is native to the park and few other locations, is at risk of decline and long term survival, along with the Powerful Owl.
Cr Annear recalled memories of being a teenager and seeing different and interesting groups in the park, doing a variety of activities.
Learning about the Eltham Copper Butterfly and other fauna and flora in the reserve, and the preservation of the park is something from my youth I treasure, the councilor said.
"It serves many community purposes," she said.
"I love it so much, it's very action based. It just tells us what we need to do, and we just need to do it," Cr Annear said.
Councilors voted unanimously to pass the plan.
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