Quoll's home wanted
MAN may not have an impact on the council decision on Cherrabah's proposed mega-resort, but one of Australia's largest marsupial carnivores could throw a spanner in the works.
Male quolls can grow to 1.3m in length and weigh up to 7kg, and according to a national recovery plan, the spotted tailed variety has a stronghold and research population in the Elbow Valley resort, one of only six places identified in south Queensland.
For the Cullendore Quoll Action Group, plans to extend the Cherrabah homestead into a mini-city, which could be bigger in population than Stanthorpe, could result in extinction to the endangered species.
Farmer Stuart Bell and Ben Dyball live on land surrounding the resort.
Mr Bell had a researcher living near him while she studied the ecology and conservation of the quoll.
He stressed he was not anti-development but saw the need to protect the species.
“We've set aside 1000 acres of our own land to protect them,” he said.
The group has made a submission to the council as the developers are seeking planning approval.
The closing date for submissions is Tuesday.
Chinese company Joyful View Garden owns the resort, but has enlisted the help of development consultants Urbis to help them put the plans into place.
Urbis has since held consultations and taken questions from the public, many of whom are concerned about the impact of a project of this scale.
While there was considerable angst over the water allocation the resort was given, which after appeal was doubled to the surprise of surrounding landholders, the quoll is the main stumbling block for the action group.
“When the owners purchased it, they were aware of the quolls, so if they wanted to develop, perhaps they should have bought elsewhere,” Mr Bell said.
Once the deadline for submissions passes, council's planning department will be charged with assessing the application, which was already given pre-approval subject to a number of issues.
A recommendation will then go before council, which will make a decision whether or not to approve it.