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Evidence on 3irdsville Track. JIAT.?vEE, November 1. The section of th-2 Commonwealth Public Works Committee, taking evidence at Maribn^^owna Station on October 26, -was informed bv Joseph Coghlan, station nian-ijer, that the area of the holdins was 4,300 square miles, and that it carried 20,CO0 cattle and SCO horses, but no sheep, although the country -would be suitable for sheep, ilosfc of ilia cattle ?-verc droved to Marree to be trucked thenw to Adelaide, but some went to the Townsville me^t works. Exceptiutr in isolated patches he did not consider the country suitable for closer settlement. Ike district srcs sub ject to floods, 'which did not materially affect cattle, but would make successful sheepbreediis difficult. Jn witness's opinion the construction of a railway io connect Marion Downs with Marree would luean an increased incal population, and he I thought -att2o would be trucked all the way I to Adelaide; bus ou account of the long' distance it would be an advantage to have j a placa on the way where tbe cattle could ! be detrained and rested. At Dedoirrie, on October 27, evidence wa3 obtained from George Gafiney, who considered the land between Boaiis and Birdsvillo good pastoral country, which could be resumed, an-d cut up into holding of about £00 square mile3. on which any man might make a 2°°d living. As tlw country was subject to floods railway co;j struction would be difiicuit. and* tbe pre valent of sanddrift3 would necessitate constant attention to any hne built. At Glengyle Station, oa October 27, Ai bsrt Edwards, station manager, said the area of that boHin^ was 1,CCO square miles, and the total area under his control (in cluding outstations). 7,CC0 square miles. Tha stock carried was 25,CC0 cattle and l.CCO horees. During a flood the rivera would cover tie country for 10 to 13 miles from their channels, ior a -ispth of 18-in. to 5 ft. He did not consider fee country ouftab'e for cutting up for closer settlement. It was only speculative country suitable for big hoidings'. Celsus Mortoa, holder of fio&ibertn Sta tion, said he was running lpOO cattle on 5C0 square mil«, u;hich should be the mini mum holding on acount of the wasto country one Sad to take up. With a rail way to Slarrea, he thoas;ht he would still take his cattlo by road in good searoiQ to avoid railway frcijhi. A rails-ay through Tiarsomindah to Bourka wouJd traverse much fcsttar country. At Sirdrril];, en October 23, Harry Afford, 3tcro ca2?..7er (formerly station maaa^er), zzid that a railway throcsli Bir-irnlla to 2iaiTC2«would open -up a lot of ? onocupisdor eparssly populated land. At| ?prersnt ibis could carry three beasts- to t*h-j i eqcaro rail;; but tritb a raiitvay and water! improveaiects. ifc would carry thrice. A railway should Dreient no engineering diffi culties, and the floods would not be a hin drance.
fcamuel vsmith, pastoraiat. sa:d he acid 220 square mile*, and carried 7C0 cattis. When improved and fully stocked/ the area ahould carry 3,CC0 to 4.C0O head. He favoured a Jine through Birdsville and Mar rce as likely to open up tie country aEd at tract settlement. John Gurn, police constable and Acting Inspector of Stock, gave figures ahowiag tha stock ssnt from Queensland to ssouth Australia. During 1S21 and to the end of October this year, thcc» had amounted to 31,CG0 cattle and 3.CC0 sbesp. At iiun^crannic (S.A:) on October 31 WiJiam Crobie, grasior, caid he had b«n living there 29 yeara, and held S55 square miles, on which he carried £00 cattle, -100 horses, and ISO goa.t3. He v;as relegated to the dry country, cs tbe bis holders like -Mr. Brooks and Sir Sidr.ev Kidman held all the water froatagy. -The country was unsuitable for holdings Ies3 than SCO square miles. With his area he had to shift stock to get feed nine yeara out of 10. The country vrcs not good enough to —arrant tho construction of a railway from Birdj vill-j to Marree.