Environmental issues are often the bane of developers. For instance, the watercourse which ran across the bottom of my suburban back yard in Gordon (which I thought of as an open storm water drain) was actually a category 3 riparian zone which caused issues for potential developers.  It also seems to cynics (like me) that rare and endangered species, intentionally congregate on development sites. This is one of those stories…

Gales Holdings own a 27ha property near Kingscliff. Over a period of years storm water run off from adjacent properties flowed onto its land. Combine that with poor drainage conditions and what do you get?  The answer is an ideal habitat for the endangered Wallum froglet which proceeded to make the site its home. It is not difficult to imagine that the desire to develop the site has led to litigation on many fronts. At least the Court of Appeal managed to start its most recent decision in good humour:

These appeals are concerned with a colony of frogs. They are not the βάτραχοι of Aristophanes, who inhabit the marshes of the River Styx, encountered by Dionysus on his way to the Kingdom of Hades. Rather, the appeals are concerned with a colony of crinia tinnula, or Wallum froglets, which inhabit ephemeral ponds on land owned by the appellant, Gales Holding Pty Limited (Gales). It is likely that both parties to these proceedings would agree with the response of Dionysus to the croaking (“βρεκεκεκέξ κοάξ κοάξ”) of the βάτραχοι:

greek quote

That is to say: “May you all utterly perish with your croaking“.

Many thanks to Petar Dobrich of P. Dobrich & Co for bringing this eminently blog worthy case to my attention.

Creative commons acknowledgement for the photograph.

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