Queensland police say a skull found by detectives investigating the deaths of Chantal Barnett and Robert Martinez is a male.

A human skull found on a central Queensland property is male, police say.

The remains including a skull and some bones, but not a complete skeleton, were found on a property near Rockhampton on Wednesday afternoon.

Officers have said it’s possible they could belong to local couple Chantal Barnett and Robert Martinez, who mysteriously disappeared near Mount Archer in March 2013.

Their families have been informed about the discovery.

Detective Senior Sergeant Scott Moon says a preliminary investigation has revealed that the skull is male.

“This is a major step forward in our investigation and will assist greatly towards the identification of the person,” he said in a statement.

Police have said they’re not jumping to conclusions, but officers have continuously mentioned the Barnett-Martinez case when talking about the remains.

Detective Inspector Darrin (Darrin) Shadlow said on Friday police had taken 400 statements since the couple vanished.

He said officers believe they know who was responsible for their deaths and that other people knew as well.

“We just ask them to look inside themselves and show a bit of conscience and come and see us,” he said.