The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the Second Week of June, 2020

172

By Jorge Cirett

During the 24th week of the year (June 8th to June 14th, 2020), at least 35 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. Notably, 8 of those were exploration updates and 9 related to financing. ON MEXICO ISSUES, Senator Miguel Lucero and a coalition of mining unions proposed the creation of the Mining Secretariat, against the presidential bid to close the Sub-Secretariat of Mining. The Mexican president asked publicly the Canadian ambassador for help to get Canadian mining companies to pay due taxes. First Majestic asked the Canadian ambassador to intervene on the tax dispute. Copper prices have reached $2.60 per pound. Two rival unions were involved in a brawl in Fresnillo, Zacatecas. Francisco Quiroga Sub-Secretary of Mining informed that mines in Mexico are free of confirmed Coronavirus cases. All mines have procedures in place to detect and control outbreaks on transport and work sites. ON EXPLORATION, in Sonora, Silver Viper resumes drilling at La Virginia; Aztec Minerals updated on exploration at its Cervantes project; Colibri presented assay results from grab samples at the Evelyn project. In Chihuahua, Kootenay Silver recommenced drilling at Columba. In Sinaloa, Kootenay Silver restarted drilling at the Copalito property. In Durango, Mithril Resources prepares to drill the Copalquin project. In Jalisco, GoGold Resources began drilling Los Ricos North project. ON MINING, Mexus Gold continues mining at its Santa Elena property. Peñoles is to invest one billion dollars in 2020 in its mining operations. Fresnillo PLC reported on payments to governments of Mexico and Peru. ON FINANCING, Minaurum closed a private placement netting $4.21 M. Discovery closed the second and final tranche of its private placement, accruing C$25 M. Silver Viper commenced trading on the OTCQB in USA. Sonoro Metals realized a third MOU on its Cerro Caliche project, Sonora. Starcore paid its debts and is now debt free. Consolidated Zinc is to raise $0.57 M to purchase equipment. Vangold accelerated the warrant program relating to its 2019 placement. Prime Mining completed the offering for C$10 M. Mag Silver now holds 19.9% of Reyna Silver.   ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Mexican Gold started the fieldwork needed to complete the environmental baseline report at its Las Minas property in Veracruz. Minera Alamos reported more drill results from its Santana project in Sonora. Capstone updated on the mineral resources of its Cozamin mine in Zacatecas, showing a nice increase. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Magellan Gold is leaving Mexico. Mithril Resources appointed new CEO and Chief Geologist. Sonoro Metals postponed its general meeting. Evrim Resources and Renaissance Gold are merging into a new entity named Orogen Royalties. Silver Spruce optioned the El Mezquite property in Sonora. GR Silver Mining filed on SEDAR the amended technical report on its San Marcial project. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY. Grupo Mexico, Fresnillo PLC, Argonaut Gold, Bylsa Drilling, Asociación de Real de Minas de San Javier, SilverCrest, Alamos Gold, Agnico Eagle, EMS, Molymex, Metallorum-Autlán, FLSmidth, First Majestic, Gruminex, Peñoles, Barimont, MAC Distribuciones, Dynapro Pumps, Cobre del Mayo, Minera Capela, Peña Colorada and Newmont Corp. informed on a large  array of investments and measures that benefit the mining communities.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Senator Miguel A. Lucero (president of the mining and regional development commission in the senate) proposed the creation of the Mining Secretariat. This was his viewpoint in the rumors that the president Lopez Obrador is about to disappear several sub secretariats on grounds of saving resources. He stressed that the mining industry operates in over 200 municipalities that deserves close attention.
  • The Union Nacional de Sindicatos MineroMetalurgicos de Mexico asked the president Lopez Obrador to evaluate the creation of a Mining Secretariat, to foster national and foreign investment and generate jobs.
  • The President of Mexico, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) asked publicly the Canadian ambassador for help to get Canadian mining companies to pay due taxes. He stated that the debts are clear and that there is no point on the mining companies to seek legal complaints.
  • First Majestic Silver Corp. has asked Canada’s ambassador to Mexico to intervene in an escalating tax dispute with President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s government. “We’ve been trying to get somebody to the table to finally put this behind us,” First Majestic CEO Keith Neumeyer told Reuters. Neumeyer said the company had proposed three settlement offers since 2018 before launching the trade challenge last month. “Each of the offers has been rebuffed”.
  • Copper prices grew 25% from its March minimums, reaching US$2.60 per Lb thanks to the Chinese recovery.
  • Rival Unions in Fresnillo, Zacatecas, participated in a brawl that resulted in several persons conducted to a nearby hospital for medical care. This arises for a rivalry between the Sindicato Nacional Minero Metalúrgico (FRENTE) and the Sindicato Independiente for representation of workers at the Fresnillo mine.
  • Francisco Quiroga, Sub-Secretary of Mining informed that mines in Mexico are free of confirmed Coronavirus cases. All mines have procedures in place to detect and control outbreaks on transport and work sites.

ON EXPLORATION

  • VanGold Mining Corp. completed a bulk sample and metallurgical test at its Pinguico project in Guanajuato. The 1,039 tonne bulk sample was processed at Endeavour Silver Corp’s Bolañitos mill in Guanajuato, with an average grade of 1.23 gpt AuEq, and a recovery rate of 75.2% Au, 60.4% Ag.
  • Silver Viper Minerals Corp. resumes exploration at its La Virginia project in Sonora. “The recently renewed work program continues Phase II drilling at the El Rubi discovery area, where systematic testing of the structure is being conducted on 50m sectional step outs. A second drill will test exploration targets in and around the El Rubi location”.
  • Kootenay Silver Inc. recommenced drilling at its Columba project in Chihuahua. The initial holes of the remaining 5,200 meters of the phase II 7,000 m program “will focus on expanding the F-vein by following-up on positive results from the first 10 holes of the Program…… Beyond augmenting previously drilled areas the Program will investigate untouched veins mapped out by Kootenay’s geological team”.
  • Aztec Minerals Corp. updated on the exploration of the Cervantes project in Sonora, in advance of the signing of the 65/35 joint venture agreement with Kootenay Silver Inc. Highlights from the 2017 drilling program at the California target include the following intercepts: 160 m @ 0.77 gpt Au (including 80 m @ 1.04 gpt Au, 0.11% Cu); 139 m @ 0.71 gpt Au (including 20 m @ 2.10 gpt Au, 0.16% Cu); 118 m @ 0.63 gpt Au (including 43 m @ 1.18 gpt Au, 0.16% Cu); 122 m @ 0.60 gpt Au (including 62 m @ 0.88 gpt Au, 0.06% Cu); 170 m @ 0.42 gpt Au (including 32 m @ 0.87 gpt Au, 0.06% Cu). Other targets include Purisima East, Estrella, Purisima West and Jasper. Preliminary metallurgical tests have shown 85.1% to 87.7% Au recovery in oxide, 77.9% Au recovery in mixed oxide/sulfide and 51.2% in sulfide.
  • Kootenay Silver Inc. recommenced drilling at its Copalito property in Sinaloa. The 3,000 m drill program was halted due to the Coronavirus lockdown when only one 105.2 m hole had been completed. Over 10 kilometres of untested vein strike has been mapped, with strike lengths up to 2 km and widths from 0.5 m to 15 m. Previously reported grab and channel samples have returned up to 3,770 gpt Ag, 8.2 gpt Au, 17.4% Zn, 9.9% Pb and 1.5% Cu.
  • GoGold Resources Inc. began drilling at the La Trini target, part of the Los Ricos North project in Jalisco. Historical intersections by Tumi Resources include: 24.4 m @ 6.4 gpt Au, 1,629 gpt Ag; 18.3 m @ 3.1 gpt Au, 150 gpt Ag; 6.1 m @ 2.8 gpt Au, 174 gpt Ag; 19.7 m @ 4.9 gpt Au, 193 gpt Ag; 14.1 m @ 4.9 gpt Au, 261 gpt Ag; 10.5 m @ 5.7 gpt Au, 188 gpt Ag.
  • Mithril Resources Ltd. prepares to drill its Copalquin project in Durango. “Drilling and helicopter support contracts have been signed with mobilisation of equipment commencing in June 2020…… Previous drilling has identified three areas with underground mineable grades over potentially mineable widths. These areas are El Refugio, La Soledad and El Cometa (which also include open pit resource potential). Mithril’s drilling campaign will systematically test each of these high-priority areas and will also drill test Los Reyes, Los Pinos, and later La Constancia and the important San Manuel multi-level mine workings”.
  • Colibri Resource Corp. received assays from samples collected on the western part of the Evelyn property in Sonora. The western part of the project is mostly covered by a thin veneer of alluvium and colluvium. More than 50 grab samples have been taken from small areas of sub-crop and outcrop exposed through the cover. “Three samples returned values greater than 2.0 g/t Au, 6 samples returned values greater that 0.25 g/t Au, and a total of 15 samples returned anomalous Au” up to 27.5 gpt Au.

ON MINING

  • Mexus Gold US. continues mining and expects to put 1,800 tons of material in the leach pads by the end of this week, on its Santa Elena mine in Sonora (not to mistake for First Majestic Santa Elena mine, also in Sonora).
  • Industrias Mineras Peñoles. is to invest one billion dollars in Mexico this year, regardless of the economic downturn by the Coronavirus pandemic.
  • Fresnillo PLC. reported on payments done to Mexico and Peru governments derived from its operations in both countries. The company paid in Mexico a total of US$233.7 M in Mexico, of which US$28.6 M were from licences and mining concessions fees.Fresnillo PLC Report on Payments to Governments1

ON FINANCING

  • Minaurum Gold Inc. announced the closing of the previously announced non-brokered private placement, for gross proceeds of $4.21 M, with the prominent participation of Sprott Global Resources Investments Ltd. (Alamos Silver, Sonora).
  • Discovery Metals Corp. closed the second and final tranche of its non-brokered private placement for aggregate proceeds of C$25 M. “The Company also announces it has received approval by the Mexican government to resume operations at its Cordero project with strict COVID-19 health and safety protocols”. The company has over $40 M in cash on its balance sheet (Cordero, Chihuahua).
  • Silver Viper Minerals Corp. commenced trading on the OTCQB Venture Market in the United States (La Virginia, Sonora).
  • Sonoro Metals Corp. executed a third memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the finance and development of its proposed Cerro Caliche Heap Leach Pilot Operation. As of February 28, 2020, Sonoro had received two executed MoUs regarding project debt financing and EPC services for its proposed Cerro Caliche heap leach (Cerro Caliche, Sonora).
  • Starcore International Mines Ltd. reported that the company paid out CAD$3 M of secured bonds plus accrued interest of CAD$235.4 K. In addition to this, the company also repaid a US$1 M loan. The payments were made from the Company’s cash flow generated from mine operations and prior asset sales (San Martin mine, Queretaro).
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd. announced firm commitments to raise a further $0.57 M via a single tranche placement. “Funds raised from the Placement will be applied towards the purchase of equipment to increase efficiencies at Plomosas, working capital and offer costs” (Plomosas, Chihuahua).
  • VanGold Mining Corp. announced that to date the warrant acceleration program in connection with the company’s 2019 placement has rendered $1.16 M in gross proceeds of which $650 K were accrued by the exercise of warrants by Vangold’s directors and officers. “…funding for a portion of the exercise of warrants by directors and officers was facilitated through the sale of a portion their existing share holdings” (El Pinguico, Zacatecas).
  • Prime Mining Corp. announced the completion of the offering for gross proceeds of C$10 M (Los Reyes, Sinaloa).
  • Mag Silver Corp. has acquired 14.55 M shares of Reyna Silver Corp., owning to date 19.9% of its outstanding shares.

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Mexican Gold Mining Corp. announced “that fieldwork towards completing an environmental baseline study has commenced at the Las Minas project. Drilling at Las Minas is scheduled to commence in early July”.
  • Minera Alamos Inc. reported more drilling results from its Phase II program at its Santana project in Sonora. The results further expand mineralization to the SW, and confirm the depth potential previously identified. Highlighted core length intervals comprise: 202.7 m @ 0.51 gpt Au; 105.6 m @ 0.31 gpt Au, 50.9 m @ 0.34 gpt Au; 90.0 m @ 0.40 gpt Au; 43.3 m @ 0.61 gpt Au; 42.5 m @ 0.36 gpt Au; 62.5 m @ 0.31 gpt Au, 188.2 m @ 0.28 gpt Au.
  • Capstone Mining Corp. updated the mineral resource estimate for the Cozamin mine in Zacatecas.cozamin-june2020-resource-estimate-update1cozamin-june2020-resource-estimate-update21

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Magellan Gold Corp. is redirecting its focus toward opportunities within the United States. “the company has divested all of its Mexico operations through the sale of its subsidiary Magellan Acquisition Corp.”. Among the operations divested is the SDA mill and the El Dorado property, both in Nayarit.
  • Mithril Resources Ltd. appointed John Skeet as its new CEO and Hall Stewart as its Chief Geologist (Copalquin, Durango)
  • Sonoro Metals Corp. postponed its annual general meeting to September 4, 2020 (Cerro Caliche, Sonora).
  • Evrim Resources Corp. and Renaissance Gold Inc. entered into an agreement to combine in a merger of equals “in which Evrim will acquire all of the outstanding common shares of Renaissance through a share exchange transaction to create a new company, to be named Orogen Royalties Inc. Orogen will focus on project generation as has been the history of both Evrim and Renaissance but with a renewed focus on organic royalty creation and royalty acquisition” (royalty in Ermitaño, Sonora).
  • Silver Spruce Resources Inc. signed a binding option agreement with Colibri Resources Corp. to acquire 50% interest in its wholly owned Mexican subsidiary Yaque Minerals S.A. de C.V., which holds the El Mezquite project in Sonora. El Mezquite is 12 Km NE of the Santana property, currently under mine development by Minera Alamos. To obtain 50% interest Silver Spruce has to pay US$82.5 K by September 1, 2020, US$127.5 K by September 1, 2021, and CDN$500 K for a debenture due in October 2023. The company will have the option to pay US$107.5 K by December 31, 2020 to complete the cash acquisition for a discounted total of US$190 K. Minimum work expenditures total US$600 K on the four year term of the agreement. A 1% royalty to the original vendors of the property can be purchased for US500 K at any time.
  • GR Silver Mining Ltd. filed on SEDAR its amended technical report on resources estimation of its San Marcial project in Sinaloa. There are 12 amendments in different parts of the report, with no material differences on the resource estimation.

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • In Sonora more than 125 thousand persons in 30 municipalities and 47 rural communities have received support by 13 mining companies and six service providers: Grupo México, Fresnillo Plc, Argonaut Gold, Bylsa Drilling, Asociación de Real de Minas de San Javier, SilverCrest, Alamos Gold, Agnico Eagle, EMS, Molymex, Metallorum-Autlán, FLSmidth, First Majestic, Gruminex, Peñoles, Barimont, MAC Distribuciones, Dynapro Pumps and Cobre del Mayo).
  • The mining sector in Mexico strives nowadays for social co-responsibility between community, government and enterprises, where the communities define their needs and priorities, the government complies with its responsibilities and enterprises promote and provide resources, organize community committees and develop executive projects.
  • The world day of the environment was held in Teloloapan, Guerrero, with the presence of Efrén Romero, municipal president, Army members and Minera Capela executives.
  • In Cuencamé, Durango, a road work investment of 11 million pesos was inaugurated by Luly Martínez. Municipal president. The investment was made possible with resources from the Mining Fund.
  • Agnico Eagle received the Environmental Excellence Award from the Mining Association in Canada, for its work in Pinos Altos, Chihuahua, where was developed an ultra-high density grazing initiative.
  • Peña Colorada builds a medical facility in Manzanillo. With an investment of 4 M pesos, the facility will count with an area for patient care, and another area for the rest of the medical personnel, as this new building is by the side of the Hospital General de Manzanillo.
  • Newmont Corp. published its 2019 sustainability report. The report displays all the work planned and done by the company as it strives to better its environmental, social and governmental imprint in Mexico.
  • Bylsa Drilling efforts on social responsibility on the communities neighboring the Las Chispas and Alamos Silver projects in Sonora were commended by governor Claudia Pavlovich.
  • The Mining Fund provided the resources to build the Doctores Avenue in Fresnillo, Zacatecas. The 27.14 million pesos invested funded 670 m of paving and drainage construction.
  • Grupo Mexico restated its compromise on the state of Chihuahua with the donation of a termo-cycler to the State Health Laboratory. Previously the company had donated five mechanical ventilators to the University Central Hospital, same that shortly is to receive 25 non-invasive ventilators more.

Content like what you have just read can be seen at https://gambusinoprospector.com/ and at LinkedIn’s Mexico Mineral Exploration Group.

On the image below: Quartz-graphite vein, Hermosillo District, Sonora. Picture by Jorge Cirett.

172

The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the Third Week of May, 2020.

Phyllic alteration

By Miguel A Heredia

During the twenty one week of the year (May 18th to May 24th, 2020), at least 36 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico, with twelve commenting on Mexican issues, six disclosing deals and corporate issues, five discussing on social issues, four informing on exploration results, three communicating production and financial results, three announcing financing rounds, and three reporting on resources and developments.  ON MEXICO ISSUES, Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in the Mexican mining sector decreased last year according to government data.  Mexico deemed mining an essential activity, allowing companies to resume production activities. The Undersecretary of Mining, Francisco Quiroga, agreed with the Union Labour leaders on the strategy to guarantee a safe return to the mining operations in the country.  A protocol for reopening companies was defined and only the Mexican Institute of Social Security (IMSS) can approve it or rejected it. Mining companies with operations in Chihuahua signed a letter of commitment before the State Government and the Government of Mexico, to follow the instructions on health and safety at work during the phase of resumption of operations in the so-called “new normality”. Excellon Resources and the FRENTE Metallurgical Mining Union reached some agreements to continue operating the La Platosa mine in Durango. Industrias Peñoles announced the shutdown of its Francisco I Madero Zinc mine in Zacatecas due to difficult mining conditions and low metal prices. ON EXPLORATION, In Sonora, Tocvan and its partner Colibri announced exciting new targets on its Pilar project. In Chihuahua, Kootenay released drill results from the first six of ten holes completed to date at its Columba project. In Sinaloa, Vizsla restarted its exploration and drilling program at its Panuco project.  ON MINING, Mag Silver reported Q1, 2020 financial results (Juanicipio project, Zacatecas). Mexus reported additional gold sales from production at its Santa Elena mine in Sonora. McEwen reported full year 2019 production results from its El Gallo mine in Sinaloa. ON FINANCING, Magna Gold announced a non-brokered private placement to raise gross proceeds of up to $7M (Mercedes project, Son).  Discovery Metals announced that it intends to complete a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of up to CAD $25M (Cordero project, Chihuahua).  Mithril announced that its rights issue for capital raising has closed with strong support for both shareholder entitlements and additional shortfall shares (Copalquin project, Durango).      ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Endeavour reported drill results from fourteen holes collared at its Bolaños mine in Guanajuato, eight of which intersected high-grade mineralization in the Melladito Vein. Mag Silver provided an update on its Juanicipio project in Zacatecas. VanGold announced plans to conduct a 1,000 tonnes bulk sample from its Pinguino project in Guanajuato. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Alamos Gold reported results of its annual general meeting of shareholders (Mulatos mine, Sonora). Argonaut shareholders and Alio securityholders approved merger to create North American diversified Intermediate gold producer (El Castillo mine, Durango). Equinox announced results of its annual general meeting of shareholders (Los Filos mine, Guerrero). Defiance extended its option agreement on its San Acacio project in Zacatecas to 2023. Silver Tiger (former Oceanus Resources) commenced trading under the symbol “SLVR” (El Tigre project, Sonora). Sierra Metals appointed its new CEO (Bolivar mine, Chihuahua). ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY, The Grupo Mexico Foundation donated 5,000 molecular tests for COVID-19, and will be distributing 450,000 protection kits in Mexico City as well as in the states of Mexico, Jalisco and Nuevo Leon. Minera Gorrión, subsidiary of Almaden Minerals and in charge of developing the Ixtaca mine project, in the north of Puebla, donated 1,000 disinfecting gels and 2,000 masks to the Ixtacamaxtitlán Community Hospital, in charge of leading efforts against the epidemic in the region. Minera Media Luna (Torex Gold), will donate MXP $2M to launch a hospital in Iguala, Guerrero, which will exclusively treat patients with COVID-19. Consorcio Minero Peña Colorada S.A. de C.V. , donated MXP $500K to the Integral Development of the Family (DIF)  of Colima State to allocate it to the Emergent Food Attention Program implemented by the government.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in the Mexican mining sector, decreased last year, according to government data. Net FDI in 2019 was USD $592M, down from almost USD $ 650M in 2018, according to data published by the economy ministry. The 2019 figure is the lowest compared to previous years. Spending peaked at USD $ 5.44B in 2013. The industry leaders see a general decline in investment in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Mining companies intend to restart operations in June 1, 2020, as part of a gradual reopening of the economy under which the sector has acquired essential status.
  • Mexico, deemed mining an essential activity, allowing companies to resume production activities, six weeks after asking all non-essential business to temporarily close in response to the COVId-19 pandemic. Argonaut, Azure, Compañía Real del Monte, Premier, Newmont, Alamos Gold, Great panther, among others, are some of the mining companies which will be starting activities at its mine operations.
  • The Undersecretary of Mining, Francisco Quiroga, agreed with the Union Labour leaders on the strategy to guarantee a safe return to the mining operations in the country, once the reactivation of this sector was allowed. The mining sector generates 370K direct jobs and 2.3M of indirect jobs throughout the country, which generates benefits for workers and employees. Mining represents an essential sector because it supplies raw materials to practically all industries. On the other hand, Francisco Quiroga has been very active working with mining companies to define, along with the Secretary of Health, Jorge Alcocer Varela, the protocols for a safe reopening in 249 mining municipalities.
  • A protocol for reopening companies was defined by the authorities. Companies must have the authorization of the Mexican Institute of Social Security (IMSS) to restart activities, after remain closed due to the CIVID-19. According to the Technical Guidelines for Health Safety in the Workplace, published this Monday by the Ministry of the Economy (SE), the IMSS will have 72 hours to approve or reject the request.
  • Mining companies with operations in Chihuahua, signed a letter of commitment before the State Government (Governor Javier Corral) and the Government of Mexico (Undersecretary of Mining Francisco Quiroga), to follow the instructions on health and safety at work during the phase of resumption of operations in the so-called “new normality”. Francisco Quiroga added that to close the circle of prevention, the mining industry will be trained in the management of the different equipment that will be put into operation to comply with the protocols set by the State Health Council.
  • Excellon Resources Inc., and the FRENTE Metallurgical Mining Union, reached some agreements to continue operating the La Platosa mine in the Bermejillo community, located in the Mapimí municipality, Durango. It highlights a cut of around 20% in personnel and a technical strike for the next 60 days as the company develops the restructuring process. The official assured that the liquidations of the personnel who will be dismissed will be 100% and in accordance with the provisions of the law, in addition to reaching an agreement with the union so that, while the technical strike is carried out, only 50% of their salary will be paid to the rest of the workers who, due to the pandemic caused by the COVID-19, are in domiciliary protection.
  • Industrias Peñoles S.A.B. de C.V., announced the shutdown of its Francisco I Madero Zinc mine in Zacatecas, due to difficult mining conditions and low metal prices. It stated that it has begun laying off unionized workers in the mine unit and also trying to reassign to others workers and contractors to other mine units. The Francisco I Madero mine started operations in 2001. Peñoles processed in 2019, over 2.3M tonnes to produce 93M Lb Zn and 19.9M Lb Pb.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Tocvan Ventures Corp, and its partner Colibri Resources Corporation, announced new exciting targets generated by an IP survey on its Pilar project in Sonora. “According to the survey data, the Main Zone and the North Hill Zone may be connected and, if confirmed, would be renamed as a mineralization trend. Results also indicate the potential of the northeast-southwest structures connecting the 4-Trench Zone to the Main Zone, Tocvan said”. Geophysical results will be combined with additional surveys to better define drill targets for a phase 2 drilling campaign.
  • Kootenay Silver Inc., released drill results from six of ten holes completed to date at its Columba project in Chihuahua, as part of its 2020 drilling program. Significant drill intersections were encountered in hole CDH-20-045 with 239 g/t Ag, 0.08% Pb, and 0.4% Zn over 4.3m, including 350 g/t Ag, 0.1% Pb, and 0.5% Zn over 2.5m, and including 456 g/t Ag, 0.2% Pb and 0.6% Zn over 1.5m in the F Vein, and 208 g/t Ag, 0.1% Pb, and 0.2% Zn over 3m, including 974 g/t Ag, 0.03% Pb, and 0.3% Zn over 0.5m in a footwall vein; hole CDH-20-046 with 264 g/t Ag, 0.06% Pb, and 0.1%Zn over 6.8m, including 553 g/t Ag, 0.1% Pb, and 0.2% Zn over 2.9m, including 911 g/t Ag, 0.2% Pb, and 0.2% Zn over 1.4m, including 1,585 g/t Ag, 0.3% Pb, and 0.3% Zn over 0.6m, and 689 g/t Ag, 0.2% Pb, and 0.3% Zn over 0.5m, and 219 g/t Ag, 0.04% Pb, and 0.1% Zn over 5m, all in the F Vein; hole CDH-20-047 with 166 g/t Ag, 0.2% Pb, and 0.5% Zn over 15.65m, including 351 g/t Ag, 0.4% Pb, and 1% Zn over 5.97m, including 400 g/t Ag, 0.45% Pb, and 1.2% Zn over 4.97m, including 782 g/t Ag, 1.1% Pb, 3.6% Zn over 1.05, including 305 g/t Ag, 0.1% Pb, and 0.3% Zn over 1.15m, including 219 g/t Ag, 0.4% Pb, and 0.7% Zn over 1.1m, including 432 g/t Ag, 0.5% Pb, and 1% Zn over 0.97m; and hole CDH-20-042 with 115 g/t Ag over 0.3m in a hangingwall of a quartz vein, and 86 g/t Ag 0.02% Pb, and 0.1% Zn over 13m, including 111 g/t Ag, 0.03% Pb, and 0.1% Zn over 5.9m, in the F Vein. These holes tested the F Vein structure along 400 meters of strike length with holes 42 to 45 focusing on gaps in the 2019 drill program, while holes 46 and 47 were step outs along strike.
  • Vizsla Resources Corp., restarted its exploration and recommenced its 14,500m drilling programs at its Panuco project in Sinaloa. Vizsla has tested only five of the initially twenty targets and will continue with two drill rigs to ensure the remaining 10,861m of planned drilling is completed in the 2020 calendar year.

ON MINING

  • Mag Silver Corp., reported Q1, 2020 financial results. It estimated the pre-operative initial capital now at USD $440M as of January, 2018. The company also reported a development expenditure of approximately USD $153.5M (company therefore estimates approximately $286,584 of remaining initial capital on a 100% basis as at March 31, 2020), and an existing cash and other working capital as at March 31, 2020 of USD $6.8M and USD $13.2M respectively (Juanicipio project, Zacatecas).
  • Mexus Gold , reported addition gold sales from production at its Santa Elena mine in Sonora. It sold 47.5Oz Au on May 7th and was processing an additional 45 Oz Au the week of May 18th. Mexus announced that the sales of gold for the month of May are expected to exceed 120 Oz Au.
  • McEwen Mining Inc., reported full year 2019 production results from its El Gallo mine in Sinaloa. It produced 2,700 Oz AuEq (GEO) from residual leaching of the heap leach pad. Beginning with Q42019, the company has ceased relying on, and disclosing, cash costs and AISC per GEO as key metrics for El Gallo mine. Residual leaching will continue for as long as incremental revenue exceeds incremental costs.

ON FINANCING

  • Magna Gold Corp., announced a non-brokered private placement to raise gross proceeds of up to $7M. Net proceeds will be used for working capital purposes in connection with the company´s existing projects (Mercedes project, Sonora).
  • Discovery Metals Corp., announced that it intends to close a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of up to CAD $25M. Net proceeds will be used primarily to continue the exploration programs at its Cordero and Coahuila projects in Chihuahua and Coahuila respectively.
  • Mithril Resources Limited, announced that its rights issue for capital raising has closed with strong support for both shareholder entitlements and additional shortfall shares. The company was required to raise a minimum of $1.5M under the rights issue as a condition precedent of the transaction with Sun Minerals Pty Ltd. Fund raised will be used to advance exploration at its Copalquin project in Durango, following completion of the acquisition of Sun Minerals.

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Endeavour Silver Corp., reported drill results from fourteen holes collared at its Bolaños mine in Guanajuato, eight of which intersected high-grade mineralization over minable widths in the Melladito Vein. Significant drill intersections were encountered in hole BN27 with 24.3 g/t Au and 787 g/t Ag (3,217 g/t AgEq) over a true width (TW) of 1.5m, including 91.8 g/t Au and 2,200 g/t Ag (11,380 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 0.20m; hole BN31 with 12.48 g/t Au and 50 g/t Ag (1,298 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 1.1m, including 50.8 g/t Au and 191 g/t Ag (5,271 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 0.2m; and hole BN32 with 7.37 g/t Au and 170 g/t Ag (907 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 2.7m, including 9.47 g/t Au and 327 g/t Ag (1,274 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 0.6m.”The eight drill holes outline a new mineralized zone 100 m long by 200 m deep, open in all directions. It could connect with the historic high-grade San Ramon mine workings immediately west of and the San Pablo mine workings immediately east of the drill holes. This part of the Melladito vein was not previously explored and represents an exciting new area for resource estimation and mine development”.
  • Mag Silver Corp., provided an update on its Juanicipio project in Zacatecas. Highlights include that a detailed engineering is near completion and earthmoving and foundation preparation is well advanced for the construction of the 4,000 tpd beneficiation plant; SAG and Ball mills, flotation cells, all associated vessels, thickeners and ancillary process equipment are now secured on site, progress made with the construction of the flotation plant and infrastructure, and underground development at Juanicipio has now approached 27 km (or 16.9 miles) and is focused on three sub-vertical ramps that descend alongside the mineralization and alongside the conveyor ramp to surface at plant site.
  • VanGold Mining Corp., announced plans to conduct a 1,000 tonnes bulk sample from its Pinguino project in Guanajuato. It entered in an agreement with Endeavour Silver and will be sending the bulk sample to Endeavour’s Bolañitos mill, located approximately 28kmfrom El Pinguico project. “By conducting this large test, the Company will gain valuable metallurgical and precious metal recovery information pertaining to the mineralized material on the El Pinguico property.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Alamos Gold Inc., announced results of its annual general meeting of shareholders. It also appointed and compensated executives and auditor´s remuneration (Mulatos mine, Sonora).
  • Argonaut Gold Inc., shareholders and Alio Gold Inc. securityholders, approved merger to create North American diversified intermediate gold producer. On closing of the transaction, Argonaut and Alio shareholders will own approximately 76% and 24% of the merged company, respectively, on an issued share basis. The merged company will continue as Argonaut Gold with the ticker symbol AR on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX). (El Castillo mine, Durango).
  • Equinox Gold Corp., announced results of its annual general meeting of shareholders. It also appointed auditors and approved executive´s compensation (Los Filos mine, Guerrero).
  • Defiance Silver Corp., announced that it has successfully negotiated with the project vendor its option agreement on its san Acacio project in Zacatecas. The project vendor has agreed to extend the option agreement terms by three years from September 27, 2020 to September, 27, 2023. “Defiance will now be making quarterly payments, over three years, to the property vendor totaling USD $2,278,189, with the final option payment of USD $2,407,461 due September 27, 2023. In accordance with the original agreement, the vendor retains a 2.5% NSR which may be purchased for USD $2,500,000. Should the agreement be terminated prior to September 27, 2023 a break fee equal to 5% of the outstanding option balance shall be paid to the property vendor”.
  • Silver Tiger Metals Inc., (former Oceanus Resources), commenced trading under the trading symbols “SLVR” on the TSXV. There was no change in the share capital of the company. Certificates representing common shares of the company will not be affected by the name and symbol change and will not need to be exchanged (El Tigre project, Sonora).
  • Sierra Metals Inc., announced the appointment of its new CEO effective immediately (Bolivar mine, Chihuahua).

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • The Grupo Mexico Foundation, donated 5,000 molecular test for the detection of COVID-19 to be applied to patients from all over the state of Chihuahua. Governor of Chihuahua State, Javier Corral, stated that it will allow reducing the time of diagnosis and extending timely attention to the population. In addition, it also will donate 450,000 protection kits to be distributed in Mexico City as well as in the states of Mexico, Jalisco and Nuevo Leon. The kits are personal and contain supplies such as masks, gowns, hats, shoe covers, KN45 masks, gloves, goggles and everything necessary to promote the comprehensive protection of health personnel in hospitals.
  • Minera Gorrión (MG), subsidiary of Almaden Minerals Ltd., and in charge of developing the Ixtaca mine project, in the north of Puebla, donated 1,000 disinfecting gels and 2,000 masks to the Ixtacamaxtitlán Community Hospital, in charge of leading efforts against the epidemic in the region. On the other hand, 1,440 liters of gel and 4,800 face masks were distributed among 15 Rural Medical Units of the IMSS and 9 Health Houses of the Ministry of Health in the municipality. Likewise, MG delivered 1,300 liters of gel and 2,000 covers mouths to the Central Warehouse of Health Services in the state of Puebla to support the efforts led by the Puebla government to counteract the spread of the disease in the state.
  • Minera Media Luna (Torex Gold Resources Inc.), donated MXP $2M to launch a hospital in Iguala, Guerrero, which will exclusively treat patients with COVID-19. The hospital will be soon in operation and will also serve people from Taxco, Huitzuco, Tepecoacuilco and Cocula affected by the coronavirus.
  • Consorcio Minero Peña Colorada S.A. de C.V., donated MXP $500K to the Integral Development of the Family (DIF) of Colima State, to allocate it to the Emergent Food Attention Program, implemented by its government.

 Content like what you have just read can be seen at https://gambusinoprospector.com/ and at LinkedIn’s Mexico Mineral Exploration Group.

On the picture above, phyllic alteration in a porphyry Cu system in a prospect in Oaxaca, Mexico.  Photo by Miguel A Heredia.

 

The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the Second Week of May, 2020

IMG_9802 - copia

By Jorge Cirett

During the 20th week of the year (May 11th to May 17th, 2020), at least 43 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. ON MEXICO ISSUES, Camimex informed 23 mining companies supported 16 States on the Coronavirus emergency. The federal government announced the inclusion of the mining industries in the list of “essential” activities that could be performed under the Coronavirus emergency, starting on 18 May 2020…. only to backtrack a few days later with the announcement that mining companies “can begin to prepare” on 18 May, to start working on 01 June, 2020. Francisco Quiroga, sub-secretary of Mining, stated that the mining industry cannot wait until 01 June, 2020, for reactivation. The Supreme Court will evaluate the impugnation against the reform by which the federal government took control of the Mining Fund. First Majestic has taken steps to sue the federal government under provision of chapter 11 of NAFTA, on grounds of double taxation.  ON EXPLORATION, in Sinaloa, Vizsla Resources released results from seven historic holes from the Plomosas Mine area at its Plomosas project. In Zacatecas, Alien Metals informed on two targets defined with the aid of IP, gravity, magnetic and geochemical surveys at its Donovan 2 property. ON MINING, Santacruz Silver, Great Panther Mining, Torex Gold, Capstone Mining, Alamos Gold, Consolidated Zinc and Newmont announced their coming back to production on 18 May 2020 (the date previously released by the government to end the mining lockdown). Fortuna Silver, Argonaut Gold, Sierra Metals, Starcore International and First Majestic released quarterly results. Excellon Resources will postpone the filing of its interim financial statements. ON FINANCING, Canuc Resources closed a financing round for $100 K., Americas Gold and Silver closed it bought deal financing for C$28.75 M. Silver Viper opened a private placement intending to raise up to C$5 M. Minaurum Gold announced a C$4.2 M financing, concurrent with the previously announced C$5 M financing. Endeavour Silver entered into an agreement to raise up to $23 M for its Terronera project. GR Silver Mining granted 1.38 M options to insiders. Starcore commenced trading on the OTCQB. Oceanus Resources is to change name to Silver Tiger Metals Inc. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, SilverCrest Metals released infill and expansion results on the high grade footprint of the Babi Vista vein, which by now stands at 400 m long by 200 m in height, 1 m wide, grading 20.26 gpt Au, 1,590 gpt Ag. GR Silver Mining released high-grade results from historic drill holes at its Plomosas project in Sinaloa. GoGold Resources released drill hole results from the Los Ricos South project in Jalisco. Golden Minerals filed a PEA on its Velardeña properties in Durango. Sierra Metals filed a technical report on the Bolivar mine, Chihuahua. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Vizsla Resources renegotiated the terms of the Rio Panuco agreement, reducing by $4.2 M the payments to be made before early 2022. Sonoro Metals withdrew the technical report on Cerro Caliche, Sonora, as required by the British Columbia Securities Commission. Discovery Metals announced the resignation of Jose Vizquerra from the board of directors. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY. Minera San Julian, Capstone, Fresnillo PLC, Endeavour Silver, Argonaut Gold, Peña Colorada, La Cantera Desarrollos Mineros, First Majestic, Newmont and Grupo Mexico informed on donations ad work realized to aid communities, mainly on subjects related to the Coronavirus emergency, like medical supplies and equipment (even the construction of a hospital), but comprising also a large array of investments and measures that benefit the mining communities.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Camimex informed 23 mining companies working in Mexico have supported 16 States in the country, with activities and donations of medical supplies to aid communities in the Coronavirus emergency. Mexico was the only country in North America that did not place mining within the essential industries to continue activities during the lockdown.
  • The Consejo de Salubridad General (General Health Council) approved four agreements for the gradual lifting of measures to fight the Coronavirus, one of which is the declaration of mining as part of the essential industries that are permitted to continue work during the Covid-19 emergency (Important.- See note below).
  • Adding to the confusion on government announcements, the sub-secretary of health prevention and promotion Hugo López Gatell informed mining, construction and automobile industries are to start activities until 01 June 2020. Most mining companies had already announced the commencement of activities on 18 May, 2020, as the mining industry had been declared essential, a term which has allowed other industries to continue activities during the Coronavirus emergency. In this twist of events, the sub-secretary said these industries can prepare for starting work on 01 June, 2020, and that further notice on physical modification of workspaces, schedules, and distance between workers, among other regulations to be announced on 18 May, 2020.
  • Francisco Quiroga, sub-secretary of Mining, stated that the mining industry cannot wait until 01 June, 2020, for reactivation. This after the Health Secretariat established a two week preparation period for re-establishment of operations. “We cannot wait to the termination of the pandemic to get back to work. In mining we return to operate adhering to strict protocols and sanitary measures: since the people leaves home until they return”.
  • The Supreme Court will evaluate (after five months wait) the impugnation against the reform by which the federal government took control of the Mining Fund. The Supreme Court also has to rule in the case of Puebla’s indigenous communities against the granting of mining concessions in their ground.
  • First Majestic Silver Corp. “has taken steps to serve the Government of Mexico with a Notice of Intent to Submit a Claim (“Notice”) under the provisions of Chapter 11 of North American Free Trade Agreement (“NAFTA”)”. The company claims the SAT (Servicio de Administración Tributaria, equivalent to the IRS in USA), has shown a strong deviation from several international treatises on double taxation. “The service of this Notice by the Company on the Government of Mexico initiates a 90-day process for the Government of Mexico to enter into good faith and amicable negotiations with the Company to resolve the current dispute”.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Vizsla Resources Corp. released drilling results from seven holes on the Honduras vein and surface and underground sampling of the Animas, Cordon de Oro and Napoleon vein corridors at its Panuco project in Sinaloa. Highlighted drill intercepts comprise 4.35 m @ 208 gpt Ag, 0.83 gpt Au (including 1.0 m @ 432 gpt Ag, 1.55 gpt Au) and 2.60 m @ 151 gpt Ag, 1.02 gpt Au (including 0.70 m @ 294 gpt Ag, 2.09 gpt Au). Highlighted surface and underground sampling results comprise: 3.2 m @ 44 gpt Ag, 16.52 gpt Au (including (1.0 m @76 gpt Ag, 38.20 gpt Au); 11.90 m @ 140 gpt Ag, 1.67 gpt Au (including 2.90 m @ 249 gpt Ag, 3.84 gpt Au); 4.20 m @ 230 gpt Ag, 3.13 gpt Au (including 1.20 m @ 655 gpt Ag, 10.15 gpt Ag).
  • Alien Metals Ltd. informed excellent targets have been generated at its Donovan 2 project in Zacatecas, from an IP survey, coincident with previous geophysical and sampling results. The two stronger targets comprise the North zone prospect known as Cerro de la Cruz where ground magnetics, gravity and IP geophysics all returned coincident anomalies and the Central prospect known as Los Alomos where historical anomalous rock samples and the ground IP geophysics returned coincident anomalies.

ON MINING

  • Fortuna Silver Mines Inc. released financial results for the first quarter of 2020, without elaborating on figures from its Mexican operations. “As at March 31, 2020, the Company had $88.5 million of cash and cash equivalents…. and the company’s $150 M bank credit facility had been fully drawn”. AISC per silver ounce in the San Jose mine in Oaxaca was $10.70.
  • Argonaut Gold Inc. released its operating and financial results for the first quarter of 2010, including figures from its Mexican operations. The El Castillo Complex in Durango produced 28,508 Oz AuEq at a cash cost of $941, with 5.28 M tonnes of waste moved and 5.63 M tonnes of ore mined and 4.68 M tonnes placed on the heaps @ 0.44 gpt Au, producing 27,270 Oz Au, 99 K Oz Ag. La Colorada in Sonora produced 13,028 Oz AuEq at a cash cost of $1,021 per Oz Au, with 4.68 M tonnes of waste moved, and 947 K tonnes of ore mined and 966 K tonnes loaded to the leach pads @ 0.35 gpt Au, producing 13,028 Oz Au, 54.2 K Oz Ag. The company is preparing to restart activities at its two operating units as restrictions to work on the Coronavirus emergency ease.
  • Sierra Metals Inc. presented consolidated results for the first quarter of 2020. The Bolivar Mine processed a record 377.5 K tonnes in Q1 2020, representing a 43% increase over Q1 2019. Copper represents 40% of Sierra Metals’ revenue in Q1 2020, as the Company is trending towards copper as its main product as a percentage of revenue. During the period 8,048 m were drilled at Bolivar, Chihuahua, whereas at Cusi, also in Chihuahua, 2,172 m were drilled. The company held 36.9 M in cash and cash equivalents by the end of the period, with $49.2 M in working capital.
  • Starcore International Mines Ltd. announced production results for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2019, ended April 30, 2020, at its San Martin mine in Queretaro. During the quarter 56.k tonnes were milled @ 1.65 gpt Au, 25.3 gpt Ag, recovering 88.7% Au, 55.8% Ag, to produce 2,925 Oz AuEq.
  • Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd. commenced preparations to resume mining and milling operations at the Zimapan mine in Hidalgo on May 19, 2020.
  • Great Panther Mining Ltd. intends to restart operations in Mexico this month in accordance with the Mexican federal government’s announcements of the lifting of restrictions that have suspended mining operations in the country since the start of April (Topia, Durango).
  • Excellon Resources Inc. will postpone the filing of its interim financial statements and management’s discussion and analysis for the first quarter of 2020, relying on the blanket relief granted by Ontario Instrument 51-502, which provides for up to a 45-day extension for periodic filings (Platosa, Durango).
  • Fortuna Silver Mines Inc. presented first quarter 2020 results. At San José, in Oaxaca, 246.8 K tonnes were milled, averaging 2,837 tonnes per day (tpd) @ 216 gpt Ag, 1.33 gpt Au, with recoveries of 92% Ag, 91% Au, to produce 1.57 M OZ Ag, 9,630 Oz Au at production cash cost $7.50 per Oz Ag and AISC $10.70 per Oz Ag.
  • First Majestic Silver Corp. announced consolidated financial results for the first quarter 2020. Restart procedures are being taken after the announcement of the lifting of the Coronavirus emergency for mining companies, to start work by 18 May, 2020. The company ended the quarter with $145.2 M in cash and cash equivalents.First Majstic Q1 production1
  • Torex Gold Resources Inc. plans to resume full production at its El Limón Guajes mining complex in Guerrero by the end of this month, following the designation of mining as an essential activity by the government.
  • Capstone Mining Corp. announces it has safely started ramping up operational activities at its Cozamin mine in Zacatecas, following the Mexican federal government announcement on May 12, 2020 that mining is an essential industry.
  • Alamos Gold Inc. expects to begin ramping up full operations at its Mulatos mine in Sonora on May 18, 2020. Following the Mexican government’s declaration of mining as an essential activity.
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd. advised that the Mexican Government has instructed that all mining is to be considered an essential service, allowing the Plomosas mine and Aldama concentrator to re-commence operations from 18 May 2020. It is expected the ramp up back to full production will be completed by the end of May.
  • Newmont Corp. expects to begin safely ramping up operations at Peñasquito in Mexico on May 18 following the government’s designation of mining as an essential activity. “On April 22, Peñasquito reached a definitive agreement with the San Juan de Cedros community (one of 25 neighboring communities) in Zacatecas, Mexico on land use, water availability, infrastructure and social investments. This includes access to 10,000 hectares for exploration and operational purposes, and resolves all outstanding issues with the community. The agreement was reached with the support of Mexico’s Ministry of Interior (SEGOB) and representatives of the State of Zacatecas and was signed by elected representatives of the Cedros community. The agreement is expected to be ratified in a General Assembly once COVID-19 restrictions on gatherings are lifted by the government. The agreement expressly states that any future disputes will be resolved through dialogue and free of blockades”.

ON FINANCING

  • Canuc Resources Corp. closed a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of $100 K (San Javier, Sonora).
  • Starcore International Mines Ltd. announced its shares have been approved to commence trading on the OTCQB. “This listing on the OTCQB compliments the Company’s listings on the Toronto Stock Exchange and the Frankfurt Stock Exchange” (San Martin, Queretaro).
  • Americas Gold and Silver Corp. closed its previously announced bought deal financing with a syndicate of underwriters co‐led by Cormark SecuritiesInc. and Desjardins Capital Markets for aggregate gross proceeds of C$28.75 M (Cosalá, Sinaloa).
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd. has established an on-line application for shareholders to subscribe for the new shares under the Entitlement Offer 23 April 2020 (Plomosas, Chihuahua).
  • Silver Viper Minerals Corp. entered into a letter of engagement with Eight Capital and Red Cloud Securities Inc. for a private placement aiming to raise C$5 M in gross proceeds (La Virginia, Sonora).
  • GR Silver Mining Ltd. granted incentive stock options to certain directors, officers, and consultants to purchase up to an aggregate of 1.38 M shares of the Company (Plomosas, Sinaloa).
  • Minaurum Gold Inc. announced that, concurrent with its C$5 M marketed private placement announced on May 4, 2020, the company has agreed to issue up to a further 10.5 M units to raise additional C$4.2 M in gross proceeds (Alamo Silver, Sonora).
  • Endeavour Silver Corp. entered into a sales agreement with BMO Capital Markets, CIBC Capital Markets, H.C. Wainwright & Co., TD Securities, Roth Capital Partners, B. Riley FBR and A.G.P., to sell common shares to raise gross proceeds of up to $23 M. No offers of sales of common shares will be made on the TSX or other trading markets in Canada. Net proceeds will be used to advance its Terronera project in Jalisco.
  • Mithril Resources Ltd. advised that its 1 for 1 Non-Renounceable Rights Issue closed at 5:00pm on 14 May 2020 (Copalquin, Durango).
  • Oceanus Resources Corp. announced that it is changing its name to Silver Tiger Metals Inc. on the TSX Venture Exchange. The company also announced a non-brokered private placement to raise up to $675 K (El Tigre, Sonora).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • SilverCrest Metals Inc. is to restart exploration and development work at its Las Chispas Project in Sonora by mid-May, using strict COVID-19 protocols. The company also released in-fill and expansion drill results for the BaBi Vista vein at Las Chispas. The updated high-grade footprint is 400 m along vein strike by 200 m in height, grading 20.26 gpt Au and 1,590 gpt Ag over an average true width of 1.0 m, and open in most directions. Highlighted results from the last drill holes comprise true width intervals of 0.6 m @ 3.29 gpt Au, 216 gpt Ag; 0.9 m @ 12.44 gpt Au, 1,103 gpt Ag; 0.6 m @ 1.17 gpt Au, 93 gpt Ag; 0.4 m @ 2.0 gpt Au, 232 gpt Ag; 1.8 m @ 78.83 gpt Au, 5,235 gpt Ag; 0.4 m @ 3.12 gpt Au, 302 gpt Ag; 0.4 m @ 2.05 gpt Au, 148 gpt Ag; 0.4 m @ 4.72 gpt Au, 401 gpt Ag.
  • GR Silver Mining Ltd. reported high-grade drill results at its Plomosas project in Sinaloa. The results are from holes in the Plomosas mine area, drilled by previous operators of the property. Highlighted true width (TW) intervals comprise 1.74 m @ 118 gpt Ag, 30.64 gpt Au, 0.1% Pb, 0.1% Zn; 1.30 m @ 4.75 gpt Au; 4.23 m @ 57 gpt Ag, 1.35 gpt Au, 3.7% Zn, 3.3% Pb; 3.13 m @ 31 gpt Ag, 4.54 gpt Au, 5.8% Zn, 5.2% Pb; 4.96 m @ 52 gpt Ag, 2.60 gpt Au; 0.7% Zn, 3.1% Pb; 0.98 m @ 850 gpt Ag, 0.14 gpt Au, 0.8% Zn, 1.2% Pb; 14.09 m @ 185 gpt Ag, 0.07 gpt Au, 0.6% Zn, 0.8% Pb; 2.70 m @ 240 gpt Ag, 0.05 gpt Au, 0.9% Zn, 1.6% Pb; 3.42 m @ 240 gpt Ag, 0.05 gpt Au, 1.0% Zn, 1.6% Pb; 4.28 m @ 760 gpt Ag, 2.3% Zn, 1.5% Pb; 12.15 m @ 225 gpt Ag, 0.43 gpt Au, 3.0% Zn, 3.6% Pb; 1.45 m @ 1,659 gpt Ag, 0.19 gpt Au, 1.2% Zn, 3.7% Pb; 1.93 m @ 96 gpt Ag, 4.11 gpt Au, 0.8% Zn, 5.9% Pb.
  • GoGold Resources Inc. released assay results from 15 diamond drill holes at the Los Ricos South project in Jalisco. Highlighted core length intervals comprise 14.6 m @ 1.64 gpt Au, 136 gpt Ag; 15.7 m @ 0.52 gpt Au, 22 gpt Ag; 18.0 m @ 0.65 gpt Au, 85 gpt Ag; 19.0 m @ 0.89 gpt Au, 208 gpt Ag (including 5.4 m @ 2.28 gpt Au, 559 gpt Ag and 3.2 m @ 3.13 gpt Au, 858 gpt Ag); 11.5 m @ 0.86 gpt Au, 61 gpt Ag.
  • Golden Minerals Co. announced the filing on SEDAR of a preliminary economic assessment (PEA) and accompanying technical report for its Velardeña properties in Durango.
  • Sierra Metals Inc. filed a 43-101 compliant technical report on the Bolivar mine in Chihuahua. “There are no material differences in the Report from those results disclosed in the Company’s press release dated March 31, 2020”.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Vizsla Resources Corp. renegotiated the terms of the Rio Panuco option agreement, extending it for one more year. The Silverstone option period has been extended into 2022 and the total Panuco mining district option payments between now and the beginning of 2022 will be reduced by over USD$4.1 M, from USD$5.63 M to USD$1.48 M. The total Panuco and Silverstone agreement is for USD$43.08 M in seven years.
  • Sonoro Metals Corp. withdraws Cerro Caliche project development report filed on April 28, 2020, as a result of a review by the British Columbia Securities Commission. “The Company is amending the Report to correct problematic technical disclosures, and expects to publish a revised version in the next week” (Cerro Caliche, Sonora).
  • Discovery Metals Corp. announced that Mr. Jose Vizquerra has resigned as a director of the company to focus on other professional commitments (Cordero, Chihuahua).

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • Minera San Julián (Fresnillo PLC), donated 20 tonnes of non-perishable food to the community of Guadalupe y Calvo, Chihuahua, as well as 2,300 face masks.
  • Capstone has donated approximately $150,000 pesos in Hacienda Nueva, Zacatecas. Food supplies and sanitizers are among the articles delivered.
  • Fresnillo PLC is to finish construction of the Covid-19 Hospital, in Fresnillo, Zacatecas by the end of May.
  • Fresnillo PLC donates medical equipment to the IMSS and General Hospital in Caborca, Sonora. The supplies include face masks, disinfectant gel and N95 face masks.
  • Endeavour Silver informed that during 2019 70% of all training involved safety education; received the “Caso de Plata” safety award at Guanacevi, Durango; Completed an average of 47 hours of training for each employee; supported 118 students with scholarships; sponsored several events to engage with over 1,000 locals in communities near Terronera, in Jalisco; fully funded a multi-use recreational facility for El Cubo community; planted 51,000 trees in reforestation projects and paid $5 M in various taxes.
  • Argonaut Gold Inc. informed it has delivered its 3,000th academic scholarship in Mexico, has initiated a local program with the community of Cerro del Gallo for the cleaning of the San Antón de las Minas River in Guanajuato, provided 150 food support pantries for families in San Juan del Rio in Durango and held the opening ceremony for the Argonaut Community House in La Colorada, Sonora, a center that the company donated to the community that is open for local stakeholders to interact with Argonaut team members and attend courses.
  • Peña Colorada donated 1,000 lab coats for doctors and 1,000 K95 face masks in Colima.
  • La Cantera Desarrollos Mineros installed the community lunch room in the El Encino neighborhood, in Guanajuato. The objective, partnering with the Municipality, is to assist the most needed with food supplies during the Coronavirus emergency; more than 60 families were serviced on the first day of operation.
  • First Majestic delivered 900 health sets to inhabitants of Tayoltita, Durango.
  • Newmont and the Zacatecas State signed an agreement to fight Covid-19. The company already has an integrated plan accepted by the Mining Sub-Secretariat, with a health perimeter and a protocol to follow should a Covid-19 positive case presents in the area. More than 24 tonnes of food has been delivered to persons in need on 25 communities, and Mx$5.25 M have been invested in the strengthening of hospital capacity; furthermore, 500 Covid-19 test kits were donated to the Health Secretariat and ventilators and screens are to be delivered to the desert health clinics.
  • Grupo Mexico and Cemza donate medical equipment in Campeche. The two groups donated medical equipment and supplies to the General Hospital “María del Socorro Quiroga Aguilar”.

Content like what you have just read can be seen at https://gambusinoprospector.com/ and at LinkedIn’s Mexico Mineral Exploration Group.

On the image below: Quartz-graphite vein, Hermosillo District, Sonora. Picture by Jorge Cirett.

IMG_9802 - copia

The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the Fifth Week of April, 2020

265

By Jorge Cirett

During the 18th week of the year (April 27th to May 3rd, 2020), at least 34 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. ON MEXICO ISSUES, INEGI presented production of metals and minerals for February. Camimex continues seeking the lifting of the mining halt during the current Coronavirus emergency. The Silver Institute informed Mexico continues to hold the premier position in silver production. Canada, unlike Mexico, permitted mines to operate under the Covid-19 emergency. ON EXPLORATION, in Baja California, One World Lithium is planning to begin drilling in June 2020. In Sonora, Colibri released drilling results at Evelyn, and completed a drone survey at El Mezquite; Sonoro updated on exploration at Cerro Caliche. In Durango, Canasil outlined plans for a drill program at Nora. In Jalisco, GoGold released results from eight holes at Los Ricos South.  ON MINING, Sierra Metals and Equinox Gold reported on the extension of the suspension on mining in Mexico. Agnico Eagle, Capstone, Fresnillo PLC, Excellon Resources, Consolidated Zinc and Alamos Gold released first quarter 2020 results. ON FINANCING, Mag silver completed a non-brokered private placement for C$60 M. SilverCrest Metals closed the private placement for C$27 M. Discovery Metals granted 4.83 M shares. Mexus Gold converted $242.5 K of debt into shares. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Torex gold updated mineral resources at its El Limon Guajes mine in Guerrero. Agnico Eagle updated on the exploration status of the Santa Gertrudis project in Sonora. Evrim announced an update on the Ermitaño mineral resources in Sonora. Consolidated Zinc updated the mineral resources estimate at its Plomosas mine in Chihuahua. Minera Alamos reported results from drilling at its Santana project in Sonora. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Telson Mining, Santacruz Silver, Kootenay Silver and Canuc Resources announced that they are to abide by the Canadian Securities Administration extension granted for their annual filings. Xtierra informed on the deal with Minera Portree for control of the Bilbao deposit in Zacatecas, as well of an NSR on claims in the area of Capstone’s Cozamin mine. GR Silver completed the second option payment on the San Marcial project in Sinaloa. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY. The AIMMGM and Mujeres WIM de Mexico, from Sinaloa donated food for doctors and health workers. Minera Mexico donated 500 food packages in Santa Barbara, Chihuahua. Minera Cuzcatan created a fund for community emergencies. Fresnillo is building a prefabricated hospital in Fresnillo, Zacatecas. Fresnillo PLC is sanitizing public spaces in Caborca, Sonora.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • According to INEGI (Mexican Statistics Bureau), during January of 2020 the gold production was: Sonora 3,115 Kg, Guerrero 1,592 kg, Chihuahua 1,554 kg, Zacatecas 1,157 Kg and Durango 976 Kg. For the same period silver production was: Chihuahua 102,205 Kg, Durango 74,909 Kg and Zacatecas 203,251 Kg. Lead production was: Zacatecas 13,184 tonnes, Chihuahua 3,289 tonnes and Durango 1,904 tonnes. For zinc production was: Zacatecas 29,931 tonnes, Chihuahua 9,030 tonnes and Durango 8,364 tonnes. On iron production was: Coahuila 338,198 tonnes, Colima 201,016 tonnes, Michoacan 198,023 tonnes, Chihuahua 37,664 tonnes and Durango 8,767 tonnes.
  • CAMIMEX and the PRI senate members had a virtual conference on which they shared their viewpoints on how the COVID-19 emergency is to affect the mining industry and what can be done to ameliorate the damage.
  • The Silver Institute informed that Mexico maintains its position as the major silver producer in the World. In 2019 Mexico produced 190.3 M Oz, Perú 135.4 M Oz and China 110.7 M Oz.
  • In striking difference with Mexico, Canada permitted mines to operate under the Covid-19 virus emergency. Miners in Mexico set their hopes for reactivation on the petition by USA and Canadian authorities to the Mexican government for a stepped reactivation of productive chains.
  • INEGI (Statistics Bureau) presented metal production figures for February 2020:INEGI Feb 202021

ON EXPLORATION

  • Sonoro Metals Corp. released the “Cerro Caliche Development Report” that summarizes the results of work to advance the understanding of the mineralized system of the project located in Sonora. “The report also assesses regional and property geology, the mapped zonation of the Cerro Caliche low-sulfidation epithermal system, and related potential for significantly higher grades at depth. It also includes two grade x thickness modeling tools, namely – longitudinal 3D sections and Isopachs, all based on drilling to date”.
  • Colibri Resource Corp. released results of its maiden campaign at its Evelyin project in Sonora. Significant drill hole intersections comprise 21.90 m @ 0.14 gpt Au (including 5.05 m @ 0.37 gpt Au); 27.00 m @ 0.10 gpt Au; 10.50 m @ 0.11 gpt Au. Further geologic mapping and rockchip sampling is to follow once the Covid-19 restrictions are lifted.
  • Colibri Resource Corp. recently completed a high definition topographical drone survey over its El Mezquite project in Sonora.
  • One World Lithium Inc. is planning the next phase of drilling at its Salar del Diablo project in Baja California for early June 2020, following completion of the recently announced financing.
  • GoGold Resources Inc. released the assays for eight diamond drill holes at the Los Ricos South project in Jalisco. Three holes were drilled at the San Juan area and the rest at the Main Area. Core length significant intersections comprise: 20.1 m @ 0.33 gpt Au, 100 gpt Ag (including 6.0 m @ 0.97 gpt Au, 257 gpt Ag); 23.2 m @ 0.68 gpt Au, 113 gpt Ag; 26.6 m @ 0.29 gpt Au, 47 gpt Ag (including 4.7 m @ 1.24 gpt Au, 129 gpt Ag); 22.3 m @ 1.01 gpt Au, 52 gpt Ag (including 10.0 m @ 1.79 gpt Au, 64 gpt Ag); 4.2 m @ 2.87 gpt Au, 344 gpt Ag; 15.4 m @ 0.79 gpt Au, 91 gpt Ag.
  • Canasil Resources Inc. outlined plans for an initial core drill program on the Candy vein at the Nora project in Durango. Rock samples in the vein have returned 1.0 m @ 3.72 gpt Au, 605 gpt Ag, 0.97%Cu, 1.2% Pb, 0.4% Zn; 1.4 m @ 0.89 gpt Au, 392 gpt Ag, 0.06% Cu, 0.2% Pb; 1.0 m @ 2.98 gpt Au, 540 gpt Ag, 0.85% Cu, 4.0% Pb, 3.5% Zn; 0.6 m @ 2.28 gpt Au, 316 gpt Ag, 0.57% Cu, 2.4% Pb, 0.2% Zn; 0.8 m @ 3.03 gpt Au, 585 gpt Ag, 2.8% Cu, 5.2% Pb, 1.8% Zn; 0.6 m @ 6.55 gpt Au, 10 gpt Ag, 0.06% Cu, 0.3% Pb; 0.4 m @ 12.55 gpt Au, 12 gpt Ag, 1.02% Cu, 2.7% Pb, 0.7% Zn. Dump samples have returned up to 2.89 gpt Au, 193 gpt Ag, 2.64% Cu, 8.0% Pb, 9.8% Zn.

ON MINING

  • Sierra Metals Inc. reported that the Mexican Federal Government extended the suspension of all non-essential activities to contain the advance of COVID-19 virus. The suspension will now continue until May 30, 2020, but the suspension will not apply to the municipalities that present a low or null transmission of the virus, as of May 18, 2020. This raises the possibility that the Bolivar mine in Chihuahua may be able to resume operations, due to its remote location.
  • Equinox Gold Corp. announced the temporary suspension of mining activities at its Los Filos mine in Guerrero has been extended until May 30, 2020, with the potential to an earlier start-up by May 18, 2020. The solution from the leach pads has continued to be processed at a slower pace.
  • Agnico Eagle Mines Ltd. informed the suspension related to the COVID-19 virus emergency is to cost $6.6 M in Mexico. During the first quarter 2020, 480 K tonnes were processed at Pinos Altos, Chihuahua, at a daily rate of 5,275 tonnes per day (tpd) of material grading 2.36 gpt Au to produce 33,310 Oz Au at production cash cost of $1,077 per Oz Au and total cash cost of $747 per Oz Au. The drilling budget for the year is $7.8 M on a total of 42,000 meters. Current proven and mineral reserves are 957 K Oz Au, 24 M Oz Ag; indicated and measured resources of 1.1 M Oz Au, 26 M Oz Ag; inferred mineral resources stand at 435 K Oz Au. At La India, in Sonora, 1.53 M tonnes were processed at a 16,857 tpd rate, grading 0.74 gpt Au to produce 22,926 Oz Au at total cash cost per Oz Au of $778. Residual leaching continues through the Coronavirus shutdown at La India.
  • Capstone Mining Corp. presented production and financial results for Q1 2020, including figures from its Mexican operations. At Cozamin, in Zacatecas, 8.7 M pounds of copper were produced at cash cost $0.95 per pound of copper. As part of the expansion project, an 818 m raise bore was completed, improving ventilation on the deepest part of the mine. “The final key component of this expansion, the Calicanto one-way ramp, continues as scheduled and on budget to be completed in December 2020”.
  • Fresnillo PLC. presented its first quarter 2020 production report. During the first quarter 130,000 meters of drilling were completed on operating mines, in addition 38,000 meters “were drilled at the Fresnillo, San Julián and Guanajuato districts in Mexico, and two projects outside Mexico (Peru and Chile). Interesting results were obtained in the Fresnillo district that merit follow up…”.Fresnillo Production Table, Q1 20201
  • Excellon Resources Inc. announced first quarter 2020 production results from the Platosa mine in Durango. During the period 19,899 tonnes were mined, with 19,042 tonnes processed, grading 542 gpt Ag, 5.44% Pb, 6.78% Zn, recovering 89.3% Ag, 82.8% Pb, 74.9% Zn, to produce 296,281 Oz Ag, 1.89 M Lb Pb, 2.13 M Lb Zn, or 523,742 Oz AgEq.
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd. disclosed first quarter 2020 operations report at its Plomosas mine in Chihuahua. During the quarter 9,987 tonnes were mined, 10,321 tonnes were processed @ 16.6% Zn, 8.4% Pb, 46 gpt Ag. Regional exploration has outlined several zones of interest to the northwest of the mine, returning several high-grade gold-copper samples.
  • Alamos Gold Inc. presented first quarter 2020 results, including figures from its Mexican operations. At Mulatos, Sonora, 1.92 M tonnes of ore were mined, 2.34 M tonnes of waste moved, 22,342 tpd crushed, with 2.03 M tonnes staked on the heap @ 1.25 gpt Au, containing 81,933 Oz Au, and producing 42,600 Oz Au on an average recovery rate of 52%. Alamos is finalizing project design and plans to finalize the La Yaqui Grande project economics and announce a construction decision in the second quarter of 2020. Exploration is moving beyond the main Mulatos area into earlier stage project within the 28,972 ha land package, with $1.8 M invested during the period.

ON FINANCING

  • Mag Silver Corp. arranged a non-brokered private placement with Mr. Eric Sprott for gross proceeds of C$60 M (Juanicipio, Zacatecas).
  • Telson Mining Corp. is seeking a 30 day extension from the TSX Venture Exchange to close its non-brokered private placement offering for up to C$3 M of gross proceeds.
  • SilverCrest Metals Inc. closed the private placement with SSR Mining Inc. for C$26.98 M, strengthening SilverCrest’s financial position to a cash balance of C$234 M in its treasury. (Las Chispas, Sonora).
  • Discovery Metals Corp. granted 4.83 M options to acquire common shares of the company at $0.47 per share (Cordero, Chihuahua).
  • Mexus Gold US. Informed $242,500 of debt incurred by the company was converted to shares already held in reserve.
  • Mag Silver Corp. completed the previously announced non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of C$60 M. “A finders’ fee is payable in connection with the Offering to a group of financial advisors led by Clarus Securities Inc.” (Juanicipio, Zacatecas).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Discovery Metals Corp. announced that during the last quarter of 2019 a second rig was added to the drilling campaign at Cordero, Chihuahua, and that a non-brokered private placement for $19.0 M was completed. By the end of the period the company had $23.95 M in cash and cash equivalents.
  • Torex Gold Resources Inc. updated mineral reserves and resources at its El Limón Guajes Complex in Guerrero. Open pit proven and probable reserves stand at 24.82 M tonnes @ 2.92 gpt Au containing 2.33 M Oz Au and underground reserves of 0.66 Mt @ 6.94 gpt Au containing 0.15 M Oz Au. Open pit measured and indicated resources stand at 35.78 Mt @ 2,77 gpt Au containing 3.19 M Oz while underground M&M resources hold 1.17 Mt @ 7.04 gpt Au containing 0.26 M Oz Au. Total reserves and M&M resources contain 5.93 M Oz Au, and total inferred resources another 0.45 M Oz Au.
  • Agnico Eagle Mines Ltd. updated on the exploration of its 44,145 ha Santa Gertrudis project in Sonora. As of the end of 2019 the project holds open-pit oxide indicated mineral resources of 5.1 M tonnes @ 0.64 gpt Au containing 104 K Oz Au and inferred mineral resources of 19.1 M tonnes @ 1.17 gpt Au containing 717 K Oz Au. Underground sulfide inferred resources stand at 3.1 M tonnes @ 4.58 gpt Au, containing 451 K Oz Au. Selected true width intervals of drilling at La Amelia deposit comprise 6.0 m @ 3.7 gpt Au, 3 gpt Ag; 13 m @ 3.3 gpt Au, 10 gpt Ag (including 5.5 m @ 5.3 gpt Au, 17 gpt Ag); 10 m @ 5.3 gpt Au, 7 gpt Ag (including 4.5 m @ 10.3 gpt Au, 5 gpt Ag); 10 m @ 3.2 gpt Au, 34 gpt Ag; 4 m @ 3.5 gpt Au, 5 gpt Ag; 4.5 m @ 5.1 gpt Au, 20 gpt Ag.
  • Evrim Resources Corp. announced an update to the gold-silver resource on the Ermitaño project in Sonora. Property owner First Majestic Silver Corp. released the following figures: An indicated resource of 2.1 M tonnes @ 4.59 gpt Au, 70 gpt Ag containing 311 K Oz Au, 4.73 M Oz Ag; an inferred resource of 3.73 M tonnes @ 3.08 gpt Au, 58 gpt Ag containing 370 K Oz Au, 6.98 M Oz Ag. Evrim holds a 2% NSR on the Ermitaño project.
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd. updated the mineral resource estimate for its Plomosas mine in Chihuahua. Indicated mineral resources stand at 165 K tonnes @ 13.9% Zn, 6.3% Pb, 35.7 gpt Ag, containing 23 K tonnes Zn, 10 K tonnes Pb, 189 K Oz Ag. Inferred resources hold 799 K tonnes @ 13.0% Zn, 3.0% Pb, 17.5 gpt Ag, containing 104 K tonnes Zn, 24 K tonnes Pb, 450 K Oz Ag.
  • Minera Alamos Inc. reported additional results from its phase II drill program at its Santana project in Sonora. Significant intervals comprise 17.7 m @ 0.58 gpt Au; 53.2 m @ 0.75 gpt Au; 68.7 m @ 0.50 gpt Au; 101.0 m @ 0.37 gpt Au; 73.7 m @ 0.36 gpt Au; 143.7 m @ 0.50 gpt Au; 9.7 m @ 0.29 gpt Au; 25.3 m @ 0.31 gpt Au; 247.9 m @ 0.60 gpt Au. This campaign has extended the deposit by 50-100 m to the south-southwest.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Telson Mining Corp. informed that the Canadian Securities Administration granted blanket relief for all reporting issuers, providing up to a 45-day extension on periodic filings, and that Telson will abide by it (Campo Morado, Guerrero).
  • Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd. will be postponing the filing of its annual consolidated financial statements, and abide by the 45-day extension granted by the Canadian Securities Administration (Veta Grande, Zacatecas).
  • Kootenay Silver Inc. expects to file the Annual filings before the extension deadline required by the Canadian Securities Administrators (Columba, Chihuahua).
  • Xtierra Resources Inc. reported results for the year 2019. The company holds the rights to the Bilbao project, and acquired last year a 1.5% royalty on the project by paying C$51 K in cash and C$49 K in shares. Xtierra entered into an agreement to acquire 88% of Minera Portree by the payment of C$56 K and 2 M shares. Among the assets of Minera Portree is the right to a 2% NSR on six mining concessions adjacent to Capstone’s Cozamin mine in Zacatecas. Five of those concessions were acquired by Capstone in 2017 and 2019. An extension agreement was signed with Buchan Resources Ltd. to defer repayment of principal and accrued interest of its $800 K debt, in consideration of which 13 M shares were issued to Buchan (Bilbao, Zacatecas).
  • GR Silver Mining Ltd. announced the completion of the second option payment on the San Marcial project in Sinaloa, which included the issuance of 750 K common shares to the optionor.
  • Canuc Resources Corp. announced the postponement of the filing of the annual consolidated financial statements, according with the Canadian Securities Administration blanket extension (San Javier, Sonora).

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • The Asociación de Ingenieros Mineros, Metalurgistas y Geólogos de Mexico (AIMMGM) in coordination with Mujeres WIM de México, both from the Sinaloa District, donated food for doctors and health care workers at the Riviera Hotel, where they are hosted.
  • Minera México donated 500 food packages in Santa Barbara, Chihuahua.
  • Minera Cuzcatan (Fortuna Silver) created a Fund for community emergencies. Said Fund is to be used to cover the need for medications, groceries and funerary expenses, in coordination with local municipality authorities and adherence to health dispositions.
  • Fresnillo PLC is hurriedly building a hospital for Covid-19 patient care. The pre-fabricated building is to be installed by the side of the local IMSS clinic in Fresnillo, Zacatecas, and is to have a capacity for 38 patients.
  • Fresnillo PLC in coordination with the Caborca Municipality is sanitizing public spaces. These include 40 areas, like open plazas, parks, supermarkets, bus stations, clinics, hospitals, Red Cross facilities, firefighters station banks and local national guard facilities, all of which will be sanitized constantly.

Content like what you have just read can be seen at https://gambusinoprospector.com/ and at LinkedIn’s Mexico Mineral Exploration Group.

On the image below: Milky quartz float with oxidized sulfide in an orogenic gold system in Oaxaca. Picture by Jorge Cirett.

265

The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the First Week of March, 2020

IMG_4731

By Jorge Cirett

During the 10th week of the year (March 2nd to March 8th, 2020), at least 25 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. ON MEXICO ISSUES, several companies are interested exploring for lithium in Zacatecas-San Luis Potosí. Grupo Mexico plans to invest 78% more in 2020. Several mining companies are to invest more than $200 M in exploration in Mexico. The year 2019 was not good for the mining industry in the country, with an overall decrease in production. Durango’s governor announced mining investments for $100 M. The Peñasquito mine is expected to produce 1.6 M Oz AuEq per year for the next five years. The Industria Nacional de Autopartes (INA) is promoting the installation of a lithium battery plant. The Future of the Mexican Mining Industry seminar was held during the PDAC convention in Toronto, Canada.  Peñoles is to switch to LP gas its diesel truck fleet at one of its mines in Sonora (Milpillas?). ON EXPLORATION, in Durango, Chesapeake Gold optioned the Duraznito project, near the San Dimas mine. In Veracruz, Azucar Minerals released more drill results from its El Cobre project.  ON MINING, US Antimony reported the successful startup of the Los Juarez production facilities in Queretaro and Guanajuato. Mexus Gold announced small scale heap leach gold production at its Santa Elena mine in Sonora. Bacanora Lithium presented financial results for the last six months of 2019. Gold Resource presented production figures for 2019. Fresnillo PLC and Premier Gold Mines released financial results for 2019. ON FINANCING, One World Lithium announced the amendment of the terms on a number of  purchase warrants previously issued by the company. Consolidated Zinc entered into unsecured loan facilities with CZL major shareholders. Premier Gold closed its public offering, for gross proceeds of $38 M. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Mag Silver released results from last year’s 28-hole program with over 33,000 m of drilling, including some exciting intercepts. Gold Resource Corp. updated annual reserve estimates for the Oaxaca Mining Unit. Aura Minerals provided mineral reserve and resource estimates to the end of 2019 for the Aranzazu mine in Zacatecas. SilverCrest released metallurgical test results for its Las Chispas project in Sonora.  ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Mithril Resources is acquiring the company that controls the Copalquin project in Durango. Oroco Resource closed the acquisition of Altamura Copper, furthering its interest on the Santo Tomás project in Sinaloa. Magna Gold is acquiring Alio Gold’s San Francisco mine in Sonora. Sable Resources appointed Ruben Padilla as CEO. Equinox Gold and Leagold Mining received approval for its merger. GR Silver Mining and First Majestic signed a binding agreement on the sale to GR of the Plomosas property in Sinaloa. Prime mining signed a long-term surface agreement on its Guadalupe de Los Reyes project in Sinaloa. Cheaspeake gold optioned the El Duraznito project in Durango. Fortuna Silver is involved in legal proceeding regarding a royalty on one of its mining concessions. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY. Peñasquito  received two awards by Infonavit for its excellent compliance on payments.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Claudia Pavlovich, Sonora’s governor, praised the work women realize in the State, while on a trip visiting mining communities, like Turicachi, Nacozari de García and Cumpas, where she realized various activities.
  • Gustavo Puentes, Secretary of Economic Development, announced several companies are interested in investing in lithium exploration in the border between San Luis Potosi and Zacatecas.
  • Camimex (Cámara Minera de México) supports women collaborators that unite on the movement #UnDíaSinNosotras (One day without us) that is trying to eradicate genre violence.
  • The inauguration of Mexican Stand on the Prospectors and Developers of Canada Convention (PDAC) in Toronto counted with the participation of Graeme Clark, Canada’s ambassador in Mexico, Juan José Gómez Camacho, Mexico’s ambassador in Canada, Francisco Quiroga, subsecretary of Mining, José rosas Aispuro, Durngo’s governor and Salvador García, president of the Asociación de Ingenieros de Minas, Metalurgistas y Geólogos de México (AIMMGM). The Mexico stand was possible due to the support of the AIMMGM, Peñoles, Minera Media Luna, Newmont, Alamos Gold, Endeaavour Silver, Asociación de Mineros de Sonora, Construplan, Detector Exploraciones, SSR Mining Pitarrilla, Santacruz Silver Mining, Starcore, International Mines, MacClean, Diesel Cargo, Accendo Banco, ROD General Contractor and Ecodrill, as the Mexican government no longer supports international promotion.
  • Grupo Mexico plans to invest 78% more in 2020. On mining the budget is US$1,217 M to produce 1.12 M tonnes Cu, further US$367 M to invest in transport and US$412 M in the infrastructure division.
  • Mining industry companies are to invest more than US$200 M in exploration in Mexico during 2020. Torex Gold plans to invest US$13 M in the Media Luna project; Fresnillo will invest over US$135 M in exploration in Chile, Peru and Mexico; First Majestic Silver will invest US$28 M in San Dimas, Durango and Santa Elena, Sonora; Pan American Silver is to invest more than US$37 M at Dolores in Chihuahua and La Colorada in Zacatecas.
  • Mining did not have a good year in Mexico in 2019. Mining is ongoing in 25 States, produces 8.1% of the industrial GNP and had a 5.1% contraction as result of the policies of the actual Federal Government. Since December of 2018 no new mineral concession titles have been granted, and the environmental regulator, SEMARNAT has delivered just one Environmental Impact Report (Manifestación de Impacto Ambiental, or MIA). In Puebla, a local court maintains a suspension of work on El Gorrión mine (Ixtaca) based on a legal complaint by a communal group (ejido) on a mineral concession the company no longer has. The Cosalá mine in Sinaloa is paralyzed by a conflict between unions masterminded by Morena’s senator Napoleon Gómez Urrutia, reminiscent of the conflict suffered by Torex Gold a few months ago under the same terms. The projected investments for US$5,343 M were not achieved, with the projected real figure likely to be around 60%, and exploration at 36% of the expected. Coming interactions of the industry with the Environmental regulator the sub secretary of mining, Francisco Quiroga and Alfonso Romo are to try to better the condition of the industry.
  • The governor of Durango, José Rosas Aispuro announced at the PDAC convention in Toronto, the investment of US$100 M in the mining sector during 2020 in the State.
  • The Peñasquito mine in Zacatecas is the biggest gold mine in Mexico, the second largest for silver and one of the biggest producers of zinc and lead. The mine is expected to produce 1.6 M Oz AuEq per year during the next five years. The company is striving to reduce costs and optimize the operation.
  • The Industria Nacional de Autopartes (INA) promotes the installation of a battery plant based on lithium, to take advantage of the natural resources and the industrial prowess of the country. Bacanora Lithium plans to invest US$420 M on the installation of a processing plant in Bacadehuachi, Sonora, in order to produce 17 K tonnes a year. About 85% of the lithium producers are in Asia, and USA produces 20% of the batteries. The nearness to the USA and sea ports are other advantages for project owned by Bacanora Lithium.
  • During December 2019 mining grew by 0.9% thanks to the push given by a raise of 19.1% in lead production. For the year, mining decreased 1.5%, while lead production grew 13.3%. Los Gatos, in Chihuahua; Minera Capela in Guerrero; San Martin and Peñasquito in Zacatecas and production by Fresnillo aided in the growth seen by the bluish gray metal. Production rates from other metals show increments and decrements to the following tenor During December: Gypsum +14.4%, zinc +8.8%, silver +7.8%, sulphur +5.2%, coke -25.8%, iron pellets -7.3%, coal -5.2%, gold -2.2%, copper -0-8%. For the year: Overall -1.5%, gold -10.2%, silver +1.1%, copper +4.8%, zinc +7.0%, lead +13.3%, iron pellets -0.5%, coke -16.0%, Sulphur -14.7%, fluorite -5.0%, coal -2.0%, gypsum -0.6%. The trend reflects years of decreasing investment in mining, although some new developments might increase the production on lead, zinc, silver and copper.
  • The Future of the Mexican Mining Industry seminar was held during the PDAC convention in Toronto, Canada. Four environmentally focused conferences opened the seminar in which a dialogue table was set with the Mining Sub Secretary Francisco Quiroga, several governors, union leaders, mining company executives, financial analysts and congressmen.
  • Lithium exploration projects in Mexico: There are more than 20 lithium exploration projects in the country, most within Sonora, Zacatecas, San Luis Potosí, Baja California and Coahuila. The most advanced is Bacanora Lithium’s Sonora project in Bacadehuachi, but other interesting properties are comprised by OrganiMax’s Salar La Salada in Zacatecas, and Salar Santa Clara and Salar Caliguey in San Luis Potosí; Litio Infinito’s project in Sonora, adjacent to the ground held by Bacanora Lithium and One World Lithium’s Salar del Diablo project in Baja California.
  • Industrias Peñoles intends to change the fuel used by its mining trucks fleet in a mine in Sonora. The change involves modifying the trucks to run on LP gas instead of diesel (Milpillas mine?).

ON EXPLORATION

  • Chesapeake Gold Corp. announced it has an option to acquire El Duraznito project in Durango, which is 18 Km East of First Majestic’s San Dimas mine. Mineralization is represented by quartz veins and quartz bearing breccias along 1,500 m of longitude and 300 m vertically. Those structures are parallel to the San Dimas veins, and appear to be also of epithermal low sulfidation character. A series of rock chip samples on sub-parallel quartz bearing breccias have returned 45 m @ 1.6 gpt Au, 16 gpt Ag; 30 m @ 3.9 gpt Au, 48 gpt Ag; 23 m @ 1.8 gpt Au, 58 gpt Ag; 15 m @ 3.1 gpt Au, 24 gpt Ag. Channel samples on quartz veins returned 10 m @ 4.8 gpt Au, 464 gpt Ag; 2.5 m @ 3.9 gpt Au, 756 gpt Ag; 2.5 m @ 9.7 gpt Au, 343 gpt Ag; 3.0 m @ 2.8 gpt Au, 113 gpt Ag.
  • Azucar Minerals Ltd. released results from its ongoing program at El Cobre project in Veracruz. Core length intercepts released include: 158.0 m @ 0.64 gpt Au, 0.26% Cu (including 19.6 m @ 0.83 gpt Au, 0.28% Cu); 71.7 m @ 0.16 gpt Au, 0.12% Cu (including 17.7 m @ 0.04 gpt Au, 0.38% Cu); 179.5 m @ 0.20 gpt Au, 0.22% Cu (including 39.95 m @ 0.15 gpt Au, 0.63% Cu and 17.55 m @ 0.48 gpt Au, 0.32% Cu); 112.2 m @ 0.36 gpt Au, 0.26% Cu; 442.2 m @ 0.44 gpt Au, 0.23% Cu (including 158.0 m @ 0.64 gpt Au, 0.26% Cu); 197.5 m @ 0.32 gpt Au, 0.24% Cu (including 16 .0 m @ 0.25 gpt Au, 0.81% Cu); 193.5 m @ 0.27 gpt Au, 0.14% Cu.

ON MINING

  • United States Antimony Corp. reported the successful start up of the Los Juarez Au and Ag production at Los Juarez, Queretaro. Detailed mapping delineated jasperoid silica-rich mineralized pipes over an E-W strike length of three kilometres, and a maximum width of one kilometre. Highlighted individual 1.0-1.5 m assays on drill holes range from trace to 25 gpt Au, 13 to 451 gpt Ag and 0.08 to 1.19% Sb. With a mean grade of 1.09 gpt Au, 102 gpt Ag, 0.65% Sb, and recovery rates of 90% Au, 85% Ag, 70% Sb. The ore is being treated by flotation mill, flotation mill and caustic leach and flotation mill tailings and cyanide leach.
  • Mexus Gold US. Announced it is now producing gold daily at its Santa Elena mine in Sonora (not to mistake with First Majestic’s Santa Elena mine, also in Sonora). Mexus plans to produce 5 to 7 Oz Au daily, and then increase to 10 Oz Au per day by the end of the month.
  • Bacanora Lithium Plc. provided financial results for the second half of 2019. During the period Bacanora concluded an investment and offtake agreement with Ganfeng Lithium Co, Ltd., raised UK$14.4 M and retained a US$150 M conditional senior debt facility. Engineering work has continued, while full development capital for construction is being pursued.
  • Gold Resource Corp. presented production figures for last year, including figures from its Oaxaca mining unit. During the year, 29,435 Oz Au, 1.72 M Oz Ag, 1,859 tonnes Cu, 2,286 tonnes Pb, 5,734 tonnes Zn were produced. Apporting to that production, 629 .9 K tonnes were milled @ 1.73 gpt Au, 82 gpt Ag, 0.38%Cu, 1.88% Pb, 4.64% Zn at the Arista mine, part of the Oaxaca Mining Unit.
  • Fresnillo Plc. announced financial results for the year 2019. Silver and gold production diminished 11.6% and 5.1% respectively during the period. Total silver production was 47.4 M Oz, with most of such production coming from Saucito (15.9 M Oz Ag), Fresnillo (24.8 M Oz Ag), San Julián DOB (7.4 M Oz Ag), Ciénega (5.3 M Oz Ag) and San Julián veins (4.2 M Oz Ag). A total of 848 K Oz Au were produced, mostly from Herradura (496 K Oz Au), Noche Buena (105 K Oz Au), Saucito (72 K Oz Au), San Julián veins (62 K Oz Au), Ciénega (62 K Oz Au), Fresnillo (46 K Oz Au). The company also produced 49 K tonnes of lead, from Saucito (19.7 K tonnes Pb), Fresnillo (19.5 K tonnes Pb), Ciénega (4.4 K tonnes Pb ), San Julián (5.4 K tonnes Pb), and 78.6 K tonnes of zinc from Fresnillo (26.3 K tonnes Zn), Saucito (25.6 K tonnes Zn), San Julián (19 K tonnes Zn), Ciénega (7.6 K tonnes Zn). Cash cost per silver ounce varied between ($0.2) and $7 per Oz Ag on the different mining units, and gold between $818.6 and $847.8 per Oz Au.
  • Premier Gold Mines Ltd. released operating results for the quarter ending on December of 2019 and full year 2019 results, including figures from its Mexican operations. At the Mercedes mine in Sonora, 667.7 K tonnes were mined @ 2.91 gpt Au, 26 gpt Ag, recovering 95.8% Au, 34.0% Ag, to produce 59,901 Oz Au, 191.3 K Oz Ag. Co-product cash cost was $1,034 per Oz, and co-product AISC $1,263 per Oz Au. For the full year total capital expenditures were $18.8 M, focusing on underground mine infrastructure and development, as well as exploration and replacement of old mining equipment.

ON FINANCING

  • One World Lithium Inc. announced the amendment of the terms of 14.5 M outstanding common share purchase warrants, previously issued by the company (Salar del Diablo, Baja California).
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd. entered into unsecured loan facilities with CZL major shareholders, the Copulos and Retzos Groups. The loan facilities are for A$400 K at an interest rate of 10% per annum, repayable by the end of June 2021 (Plomosas, Chihuahua).
  • Alamos Gold Inc. declared a quarterly dividend of US$0.015 per common share and introduced a dividend reinvestment and share purchase plan (Mulatos, Sonora).
  • Premier Gold Mines Ltd. closed its previously announced public offering for gross proceeds of $38 M, paying a 5% cash commission, with a reduced 2.5% cash commission on the Orion purchase (check note for further details) (Mercedes, Sonora).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Mag Silver Corp. announced results from the 2019 28-hole program with 33,864 m of drilling on the Juanicipio JV property in Zacatecas. The latest exploration results confirm and expand the wide, high-grade mineralization in the Valdecañas Deep zone and the Anticipada vein, as well as confirming and expanding the Venada vein, and the discovery of the NE trending Valentina and Venadas II veins through drilling and development. Exceptional true width intercepts comprise: 5.7 m @ 3,884 gpt Ag, 8.4 gpt Au, 6.5% Pb, 9.7% Zn, 0.3% Cu; 21.1 m @ 129 gpt Ag, 1.7 gpt Au, 3.5% Pb, 7.8% Zn, 0.2% Cu; 21.2 m @ 147 gpt Ag, 1.2 gpt Au, 3.9% Pb, 8.8% Zn, 0.3% Cu; 1.0 m @ 187 gpt Ag, 10.6 gpt Au, 1.3% Pb, 4.4% Zn; 2.5 M @ 918 gpt Ag, 1.8 gpt Au; 1.2 m @ 279 gpt Ag, 0.7 gpt Au; 0.7 m 1,216 gpt Ag, 3.6 gpt Au.

Gold Resource Corp. updated annual reserve estimates, including figures for its Mexican operations. At the Oaxaca Mining Unit that comprises the Arista and the Mirador mine, 2.83 M tonnes @ 1.97 gpt Au, 122 gpt Ag contain 179,300 Oz Au and 11.1 M Oz Ag in proven and probable reserves.Gold Resource Reserve table 20192Gold Resource Corp Resource table 20191

  • Aura Minerals Inc. provided mineral reserves and resources estimates to the end of 2019, including figures for its Aranzazu mine in Zacatecas.Aranzazu Reserves 20191
  • SilverCrest Metals Inc. released metallurgical test results with increased precious metals recoveries at Las Chispas property in Sonora. After nine months of intensive metallurgical tests involving all veins, the results show an increase on recoveries to 96.1% Au and 93.9% Ag. The design criteria envisages a single stage crushing, a sag mill single stage, gravity recovery of 40% to 50% precious metals, leach recovery for gravity concentrate on a 96 hours leach circuit and leach recovery for gravity tails on 96 hours leach circuit.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Mithril Resources Ltd. presented the 2019 end of year report. The most significant event is the ongoing acquisition of Sun Minerals Pty Ltd., which holds an option on the Copalquin project in Durango. The said acquisition is expected to be completed during the present quarter, with field work and drilling to be undertaken shortly after, as the statutory permits have already been obtained.
  • Oroco Resource Corp. closed the acquisition of the balance of the ownership of Altamura Copper Corp., giving the company 100% control of the Santo Tomás porphyry copper project in Sinaloa. The Company holds a 56.7% interest in 1,172.9 ha core concessions of the project, and may increase the interest up to an 81% interest with an investment of up to CAD$30 M. Oroco also holds a 77.5% interest in 7,807.9 ha of mineral concessions surrounding and adjacent to the core concessions.
  • Alio Gold Inc. entered into a definitive share purchase agreement to sell Molimentales del Noroeste S.A. de C.V., which owns 100% interest on the San Francisco mine in Sonora, with Magna Gold Corp.. Under the agreement Alio Gold will receive 9.74 M shares of Magna and an additional $5M in cash a year from the closing.
  • Sable Resources Ltd. announced the appointment of Dr Ruben Padilla to the position of company president & CEO (Margarita, Chihuahua).
  • Equinox Gold Corp. and Leagold Mining Corp. received the clearance decision “from the Comisión Federal de Competencia Económica (“COFECE”) with respect to the pending merger between Equinox Gold and Leagold. COFECE approval was the final government agency approval required before completing the merger, which is anticipated to occur in the second week of March” (Los Filos, Guerrero).
  • GR Silver Mining Ltd. announced the signing of the definitive binding share purchase agreement to acquire all the shares of Minera La Rastra S.A. de C.V. from First Majestic Silver Corp., and the ownership of the Plomosas Silver project in Sinaloa. The 8,515 ha project includes the old Plomosas mine, four targets at the drill/resource stage and 16 exploration targets and and exploration database with more than 500 historical drill holes.
  • Prime Mining Corp. signed a long-term surface access agreement on its Guadalupe de Los Reyes property in Sinaloa. The agreement signed with the Ejido Tasajera, envisions an initial 15-year term that can be extended for another 15 years. Under the terms of the agreement US$38.3 K were paid on signature, with a following payment of US$20K on year four and US$30 K on year five. If construction begins prior to the fifth year, the annual payment increases to US$30 K, and the payment under commercial production to US$200 K.
  • Chesapeake Gold Corp. announced it has an option to acquire El Duraznito project in Durango, which is 18 Km East of First Majestic’s San Dimas mine. Chesapeake is to pay US$228 K in instalments to two concession owners for three years to gain a 60% participation at El Duraznito, and US$500 K to obtain an additional 20%. At the start of commercial production Chesapeake is to make a final payment of US$550 K to the vendors.
  • Fortuna Silver Mines, Inc. Provided an update on the status of the legal proceedings related to a disputed royalty on one of its extracting mining concessions at the San Jose mine in Oaxaca. Fortuna initiated legal proceedings against the Dirección General de Minas (DGM) to contest the procedure taken by the DGM to cancel one of its mining concessions if the disputed royalty plus VAT is not paid before March 15, 2020. A permanent stay of execution (amparo) was granted, but the final ruling might take months and the company might be required to pay the disputed royalty.

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • INFONAVIT executives from the Zacatecas Direction provided the Peñasquito mine with two awards for its excellent compliance with the payments of dues to the housing fund of its workers.

Content like what you have just read can be seen at https://gambusinoprospector.com/ and at LinkedIn’s Mexico Mineral Exploration Group.

On the image below: Hydrothermal breccia sealed by silica in a thermal spring in Baja California, picture by Jorge Cirett.

IMG_4731

The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the Third Week of February, 2020

IMG_1740 (2)

By Jorge Cirett

During the 8th week of the year (February 17th to February 23rd, 2020), at least 35 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. ON MEXICO ISSUES, the Sonora Economy Secretariat remarked that several investments are to strengthen the mining industry in 2020. Camimex pointed that mining companies are to invest more than US$200 M in exploration during 2020. Grupo Mexico is to return to the government the mining concession on which the disaster struck Pasta de Conchos mine is located. Camimex is to pursue its “zero accidents” goal. ON EXPLORATION, in Sonora, Colibri Resources has received the permit to drill at the Evelyn project; Riverside Resources reported on field work and sampling at Los Cuarentas; Aloro received a new drilling permit for its Los Venados project. In Chihuahua, Kootenay Silver commenced the phase II drilling program at its Columba project. In Durango, Commander Resources reported on a geophysical survey at Pedro’s project. In Zacatecas, Excellon Resources informed on the exploration status of its Evolución project. In Guanajuato, Vangold secured land access and land use permits on its El Pinguico project. In Jalisco, GoGold Resources launched a second exploration project at Los Ricos District in Jalisco: Monte El Favor.  ON MINING, Starcore International, Americas Gold and Silver,  Torex Gold, First Majestic Silver, Pan American Silver and Fortuna Silver reported Q4 and full year 2019 financial and/or production results. ON FINANCING, Hecla Mining is to redeem $475 M of 7.25% senior notes. Canuc Resources, San Marco Resources and Ridgestone Mining closed various stages of non-brokered private placements for $850 K, C$784.8 K and $715.2 K, respectively. Kootenay Silver is now on the 2020 TSX Venture 50tm. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Golden Minerals announced promising results from metallurgical test work on concentrates from its Velardeña property. Excellon informed on exploration results on its Platosa mine in Durango. SilverCrest Metals announced a new discovery of a high-grade zone on another vein of the Babicanora area of its Las Chispas property in Sonora. Coeur Mining and Alamos Gold reported mineral reserves and resources to the end of 2019, including figures from Palmarejo (Chihuahua) and the Mulatos District (Sonora), respectively. Goldplay Exploration provided an update on drilling at San Marcial, Sinaloa. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Tamino Minerals filed a law suit against an individual, in Sonora. Telson informed on the resignation of its CEO, Jose Antonio Berlanga, and the appointment of Ralph Shearing as interim CEO. Sonoro financing discussions were interrupted by the Coronavirus outbreak in China. Mexican Gold and New Found Gold terminated their binding agreement for the acquisition of New Found Gold. GoGold entered into an agreement to acquire The Monte del Favor project in the Los Ricos District in Jalisco. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY. Fresnillo PLC supports three teams in a robotic regional fair. Grupo Mexico supports social and infrastructure projects in Sombrerete, Zacatecas, with over 300 activities that benefit 3,00 inhabitants. Fresnillo PLC and Frisco are among the companies that integrate the Environmental Protection Club in Zacatecas.).

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Jorge Vidal, head of Sonora’s Secretaría de Economía (Economy Secretariat), stated that several investments are to strengthen the mining industry during 2020 in Sonora. He pointed that the investment by Bacanora minerals in the lithium project in Bacadehuachi is one of these, and another one is the investment of the Buenavista zinc project in Cananea, which is to generate 500 jobs with the investment of MXN$350 M pesos (US$18.8 M).
  • Mining companies are to invest more than US$200 M in exploration in 2020. Fresnillo is to reduce its exploration budget to US$135.1 M, from US$150 M on 2019, with about half of those funds to be used in the conversion of resources to reserves. Pan American Silver focuses on brownfield exploration with a budget of US$20 M for the year, on which La Colorada Skarn is to see a 44,000 m drilling program. First Majestic has an exploration budget of US$28.2 M, to be spent in San Dimas (Durango), Santa Elena (Sonora), La Encantada(Coahuila), La Parrilla (Durango) and Del Toro (Zacatecas). Torex Gold is to conduct an infill drilling program that will cost US$13 M on its Media Luna project (Guerrero). Agnico Eagle is to spend US$33.9 M in exploration during 2020, highlighting the funding of the Santa Gertrudis project in Sonora with US$10.4 M and a 42,000 m drilling program at its Pinos Altos mine in Chihuahua.
  • Grupo Mexico is to return to the government the mining concession on which the Pasta de Conchos mine is located. The move is in response to the presidential request to facilitate the retrieval of the remains of over 65 miners deceased in 2006 on the mine located in Coahuila.
  • The Cámara Minera de México (Camimex) vowed to pursue the “zero accidents” goal, pointing that in 2018 the associated companies reported an accident rate of 1.63, which is 3.7% lower than in 2017, and below the national average of 2.04 registered by the Instituto Mexicano del Seguro Social (IMSS).

ON EXPLORATION

  • Excellon Resources Inc. informed on exploration of its 45,000 hectares Evolución property in Zacatecas. Highlights include the expansion of the Lechuzas zone along strike and down dip, and broad intersections of Ag-Pb-Zn, like: 18.7 m @ 27 gpt Ag, 0.8% Pb, 1.1% Zn, 0.1 gpt Au (103 gpt AgEq), including 2.0 m @ 105 gpt Ag, 3.5% Pb, 4.2% Zn, 0.3 gpt Au (416 gpt AgEq); 1.5 m @ 290 gpt Ag, 6.9% Pb, 5.9% Zn, 0.2 gpt Au (779 gpt AgEq); 4.5 m @ 51 gpt Ag, 1.9% Pb, 2.9% Zn, 0.1 gpt Au (244 gpt AgEq); 3.3 m @ 55 gpt Ag, 1.1% Pb, 1.9% Zn (172 gpt Ag). Excellon plans to incorporate all recent work into an updated mineral resource estimate for the project.
  • Kootenay Silver Inc. has commenced a 7,000 m phase II core drilling program at its Columba project in Chihuahua. The follow up drilling will focus on the results of last year’s 41-hole, 6,853 m program which targeted six different veins on the property. Highlighted results from that program comprise: 1.15 m @ 775 gpt Ag; 4.83 m @ 230 gpt Ag; 2.90 m @ 519 gpt Ag; 11.0 m @ 133 gpt Ag (including 5.0 m @ 245 gpt Ag); 2.1 m @ 699 gpt Ag; 1.75 m @ 755 gpt Ag, 1.16 gpt Au; 6.25 m @ 244 gpt Ag; 11.5 m @ 415 gpt Ag (including 4.0 m @ 721 gpt Ag); 4.63 m @ 301 gpt Ag; 39.9 m @ 159 gpt Ag (including 7.45 m @ 650 gpt Ag).
  • Colibri Resource Corp. informed it has received the required drilling permits for its Evelyn project in Sonora. Drill pad construction and other required infrastructure are to commence immediately, followed by drilling.
  • Commander Resources Ltd. reported results from a 70 line-km induced polarization survey (IP) at the Pedro’s project in Durango. The 1,750 ha project was acquired in 2006 from Bearing Resources Ltd. Hematite stained silica rich ridges of angular chalcedony fragments and silicified sedimentary rocks within an angular coarse breccia comprise the outcrops within the Ahuichila conglomerate, within a soil anomaly 4 Km by 1 km and rock chip samples of up to 2.3 gpt Au. Past drilling focused on a Carlin target intercepted up to 10.5 m @ 0.51 gpt Au in oxidized silicified conglomerate.
  • Vangold Mining Corp. has secured a surface land access agreement, and a surface land use agreement for its El Pinguico mine in Guanajuato. The 15-year land access agreement was signed with the Ejido Calderones, providing a short access route to the project, whereas the land use permit was signed with a local land owner for 89.6 hectares.
  • Riverside Resources Inc. reported on field work and sampling at its Los Cuarentas project in Sonora. Selective rock sampling from dumps, float, channel and rock chips returned five of sixteen samples with more than 5 gpt Au: 25.7 gpt Au, 4 gpt Ag; 10.2 gpt Au, 9 gpt Ag; 6.8 gpt Au, 65.1 gpt Ag, 6.27 gpt Au, 120 gpt Ag; 5.3 gpt Au, 6 gpt Ag; 5.1 gpt Au, 75 gpt Ag. Three primary targets have been identified for a prospective drill program in 2020: Santa Rosalia, Santa Rosalia Sur and El Sombrero.
  • GoGold Resources Inc. launched a second exploration project located on the Los Ricos District, called Monte del Favor, in Jalisco. Gogold now owns 35 concessions covering 22,493 hectares in a 35 km trend. The new concessions come with a legacy database of 50 drill holes with highlighted intercepts of: 24.4 m @ 6.4 gpt Au, 1,629 gpt Ag; 28.3 m @ 3.1 gpt Au, 150 gpt Ag; 6.1 m @ 1.1 gpt Au, 201 gpt Ag; 6.1 m @ 2.8 gpt Au, 174 gpt Ag; 20.3 m @ 0.4 gpt Au, 225 gpt Ag.
  • Aloro Mining Corp. informed a new drilling permit has been granted by SEMARANT (The Secretariat of Environment and Natural Resources) for its Los Venados project in Sonora. The permit granted the drilling of 15 holes and the construction of up to 3.38 Km of drill roads. Drilling is to focus in the south area of the project, where a hole cut 32 m of blind strong silicic alteration with brecciated vuggy silica an sulfides, with 7.6 m @ 1.13 gpt Au, 32 gpt Ag.

ON MINING

  • Starcore International Mines Ltd. released production results for the quarter ending on January 31, 2020. In its San Martin mine in Queretaro, 58.3 K tonnes were milled @ 1.84 gpt Au, 30 gpt Ag, recovering 90.1% Au, 50.9% Ag, to produce 3,425 Oz AuEq.
  • Americas Gold and Silver Corp. presented production figures from 2019 and guidance for 2020 of its mining operations, including figures from its Cosalá property in Sinaloa. At Cosalá, 613.8 K tonnes were processed @ 50 gpt Ag, to produce 572 K Oz Ag, 43.3 M Lb Zn and 16.4 M Lb Pb, or 4.68 M Oz AgEq, at cash cost ($18.31) and AISC ($10.90) per Oz Ag produced. Improved access to the Upper Zone at the San Rafael mine will tap higher silver grades in 2020.
  • Torex Gold Resources Inc. reported fourth quarter and fill year 2019 financial and operating results. For the last quarter of 2019, Torex Gold produced 121,151 Oz Au at its El Limón-Guajes mine in Guerrero, at cash cost $617 per Oz and all-in sustaining cost of $767 per Oz, generating EBITDA of $102.2 M and repaying $82.5 M of debt during the period. For the year, Torex produced 454,811 Oz Au at cash cost of $619 per Oz and an AISC of $805 per Oz Au, generating EBITDA of $330.3 M and repaying $164.4 M of debt. Total debt now stands at $174.9 M, while cash at hand is $161.8 M. The Media Luna project resource estimate was updated to 2.24 M Oz AuEq at a grade of 5.5 gpt Au in the indicated category and 4.23 M Oz AuEq at 4.23 gpt Au in the inferred category.
  • First Majestic Silver Corp. announced financial results for the Q4 and year 2019. During the quarter 626.6 K tonnes were processed to produce 3.35 M Oz Ag, 33,176 Oz Au, 0.9 M Lb Pb, or 6.23 M Oz AgEq at cash cost $3.37 per Oz and an AISC of $12.25 per Oz. The production figures for the year are in the table below. The company ended 2019 with cash and cash equivalents of $169 M. First Majestic production 20191
  • Pan American Silver Corp. reported financial results for the year 2019, including figures from its Mexican operations. At La Colorada mine in Zacatecas 768.7 K tonnes were milled @ 361 gpt Ag, 3.10% Zn, 1.65% Pb to produce 8.2 M Oz Ag, 4.61 K Oz Au, 20.97 K tonnes Zn, 11.15 K tonnes Pb, at cash cost $4.30 and AISC of $5.00 (net of by-products). At Dolores, in Chihuahua, 6.78 M tonnes were place on the heaps @ 38 gpt Ag, 0.60 gpt Au, to produce 5.1 M Oz Ag, 117.6 K Oz Au at a cash cost of $3.09 and an AISC of $15.45.
  • Fortuna Silver Mines, Inc. provided 2020 production, cost and capital expenditure guidance for 2020, including figures for its Mexican operations. At San Jose, in Oaxaca, the company aims to produce between 6.6 and 7.3 M Oz Ag, and between 41 and 45 K Oz Au, at a cash cost of US$65.6 to US$72.5 per tonne, and an AISC between US$9.6 to US$11,7 per Oz AgEq. The plan is to process 1.06 M tonnes @ 223 gpt Ag, 1.39 gpt Au, with a capital investment of US$17.1 M, including US$12.2 M for sustaining capital expenditures and US$4.9 M for brownfields exploration programs which include 17,600 m of drilling.

ON FINANCING

  • Hecla Mining Co. announced its agreement to sell $475 M aggregate principal amount of 7.25% senior notes. The notes will mature in February 2028, with the company intending to use the net proceeds together with cash on hand to redeem all of its outstanding 6.875% senior notes due 2021. (San Sebastián, Durango).
  • Canuc Resources Corp. closed a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of $850 K, with three officers of the company participating (San Javier, Sonora).
  • San Marco Resources Inc. closed its over-subscribed non-brokered placement, raising C$784.8 K (Espiritu, Sonora).
  • Ridgestone Mining Inc. closed the first tranche of the non-brokered private placement to raise $715.2 K on gross proceeds (Rebeico, Sonora).
  • Kootenay Silver Inc. has been recognized in the 2020 TSX Venture 50tm as one of the top 50 performing companies on the TSX Venture Exchange (Columba, Chihuahua).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Golden Minerals Co. announced promising results of metallurgical test work on pyrite-arsenopyrite flotation concentrates from its Velardeña properties in Durango. “Gold and silver recoveries of 91% and 92%, respectively, were obtained from cyanide leaching of the bio-oxidized concentrate samples. BIOX* achieved 93% oxidation on the concentrate sample in batch tests, which the Company believes should translate to a 5 to 6-day retention time in a commercial bio-oxidation plant”.
  • Excellon Resources Inc. informed on exploration results at its Platosa mine in Durango. Surface drilling of the NE-1S manto returned high-grade intersections, like 6.6 m @ 1,178 gpt Ag, 6.7% Pb, 8.4% Zn, 0.2 gpt Au. A large hydrothermal system was discovered 11 km from the Platosa mine at the Jaboncillo target, where drilling is aimed to start in the first half of 2020.
  • SilverCrest Metals Inc. announced a new discovery and additional drill results from the Babicanora Norte vein at its Las Chispas property in Sonora. The discovery drill hole intercepted 2.0 m (tw) @ 6,418 gpt AgEq on a faulted extension that received the name of Area 200, on the Babicanora Norte vein, which is now the highest-grade vein in the project. The initial high-grade footprint of this zone is 500 long by 125 m in height, on the vein that is now known for more than 2.0 km. The area 200 shows an average estimated true width (tw) of 1.5 m @ 16.11 gpt Au, 2,166 gpt Ag (3,375 gpt AgEq). Highlighted results for this press release comprise 1.4 m @ 90.22 gpt Au, 9,422 gpt Ag (16,189 gpt AgEq); 2.4 m @ 45.71 gpt Au, 5,577 gpt Ag (9,006 gpt AgEq); 1.6 m @ 75.78 gpt Au, 7,662 gpt Ag (13,345 gpt AgEq).
  • Coeur Mining Inc. reported 2019 mineral reserves and resources, including figures from its Mexican operations. At Palmarejo, in Chihuahua, infill drilling helped replace mining depletion. Proven and probable reserves stand at 11.67 M short tonnes (st) @ 1.83 gpt Au, 135 gpt Ag; measured and indicated resources stand at 8.76 M st @ 1.49 gpt Au, 122 gpt Ag and inferred resources of 6.47 M st @ 1.77 gpt Au, 127 gpt Ag. These amount to 693 K Oz Au, 5.6 M Oz Ag as reserves, 425 K Oz Au, 34.5 M Oz Ag as measured and indicated resources and 367 K Oz Au, 26.3 M Oz Ag as inferred resources.
  • Minera Peña Colorada informed that the Peña Colorada mine in Colima received the visit of PROFEPA (Procuraduría Federal de Protección al Ambiente) and SEMARNAT (Secretaría de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales) personnel to review the compliance of the company on the different permits it has received.
  • Alamos Gold Inc. Reported mineral reserves and resources to year end 2019, including figures from its Mexican Operations. Mineral reserves at Mulatos decreased by 154 K Oz to 1.56 M Oz, with mining depletion partially offset by an 81 K Oz increase at La Yaqui Grande. The exploration budget was increased to $7 M with 14,000 m of drilling planned around near mine targets as well as at La Yaqui Grande and El Carricito. A number of regional exploration targets were identified with the aid of a VTEM survey carried out in 2018.Alamos Gold Mineral Resources to 201911
  • Goldplay Exploration Ltd. provided an update on exploration and drilling of its San Marcial project in Sinaloa. The last holes of 2019 returned 28.7 m @ 92 gpt Ag, including 13.75 m @ 154 gpt Ag in the Faisanes target. At the Guacamayo target 0.60 m @ 138 gpt Ag, 0.56 gpt Au, confirm mineralization 30 m east of the current resource area. Due diligence has commenced on the potential acquisitions of the Plomosas (First Majestic Silver Corp.) and La Trinidad (Mako Mining Corp.).

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Tamino Minerals Inc. has filed a law suit against an individual in Sonora. (El Volcán, Sonora).
  • Newmont Corp. appointed Jim Cooper as General Manager of the Peñasquito unit in Zacatecas.
  • Telson Mining Corp. informed its Chief Executive Officer and member of the Board of Directors, Jose Antonio Berlanga, has resigned due to personal reasons. Mr. Ralph Shearing has been appointed as Interim Chief Executive Officer for the company (Campo Morado, Guerrero).
  • Sonoro Metals Corp. informed discussions regarding debt finance and engineering, procurement and construction contracts with China-based EPC companies has been postponed due to the COVID-19 outbreak (Cerro Caliche, Sonora).
  • Mexican Gold Mining Corp. announced, along New Found Gold Corp., that they have mutually terminated the binding agreement to acquire all of the issued and outstanding shares of NFGC (Las Minas, Veracruz).
  • GoGold Resources Inc. entered into an agreement to acquire a second project located on the Los Ricos District, called Monte del Favor, in Jalisco. The agreement is to acquire 49% of 5 concessions in consideration for US$225 K, and an option to acquire the remaining 51% by paying US$210 K on the second anniversary. The seller will retain 1% NSR on the property, which the company may repurchase by paying US$1 M.

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • Fresnillo PLC supports science, technology and youthful innovation. As part of the regional robotic fair “FIRST” on the La Laguna region, Fresnillo is to support three teams. The sponsored teams are from Turuachi, Chihuahua, Ciénega de Nuestra Señora, Durango and Fresnillo, Zacatecas. One other team from Caborca, Sonora, is to participates in an international competition in Arizona.
  • Grupo Mexico supports social and infrastructure projects in Sombrerete, Zacatecas. Every year the company performs 300 activities that benefit 3,000 inhabitants. The social programs and productive activities take place in Sombrerete, San Martin, Villa Insurgentes, Ojo de Agua, Charco Blanco, Santa Rita and José de Félix communities. Also, a seed-capital program has financed 29 projects to benefit 20 schools.
  • Peñoles, Fresnillo PLC, and Grupo Frisco among the companies to integrate the Environment Protection Club in Zacatecas. More than 25 companies are to be members of this club, promoted by the State governor, and that will also have universities (Benemérita Universidad Autónoma de Zacatecas and Instituto Politécnico Nacional), the Secretaría de Agua y Medio Ambiente and federal authorities as its memebers.

Content like what you have just read can be seen at https://gambusinoprospector.com/ and at LinkedIn’s Mexico Mineral Exploration Group.

On the image below: The old train bridge between Nacozari and the Pilares mine, in Sonora, picture by Jorge Cirett

IMG_1740 (2)

The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the First Week of February, 2020

225aBy Jorge Cirett

During the 6th week of the year (February 3rd to January 9th, 2020), at least 28 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. ON MEXICO ISSUES, CAMIMEX urged the Mining Fund to be used on the grounds it was meant to (infrastructure on Mining localities), as this year these funds will flow to the Education Secretariat for use in school’s remodelling. Mexico’s mining production decreased year on year during November 2019 by 1.9%. UNAM offers an Earth Science’s degree at its Juriquilla facilities, in Queretaro. The Sonora Mining Cluster presented its annual report and 2020 program. The San Martin mine (Zacatecas) legal duel between two Unions continues with a recent ruling by the Supreme Court. ON EXPLORATION, in Sonora, Minera Alamos released drill results which confirm long intervals of significant mineralization at its Santana property; Canuc Resources surface rock sample results confirm the extension of mineralization within its concessions in San Javier. Minaurum Gold released historical drill intercepts that confirm extensions of wide, high-grade mineralization on the veins that were mined in the past on its Alamos Silver project. Colibri Resource prepares to drill two mineralized corridors on the Evelyn project. In Zacatecas Advance Gold completed the third phase geophysical survey at the Tabasqueña project. ON MINING, GoGold, Consolidated Zinc and Hecla Mining presented Q4 and full year 2019 results. Americas Gold and Silver installations on the Copalá complex in Sinaloa have seen its access blocked. Mexus Gold continues leaching operations at its Santa Elena mine in Sonora. US Antimony initiated pilot plant production at its Los Juarez property in Queretaro. ON FINANCING, Sonoro Metals is discussing financing options with Chinese companies. Ridgestone Mining ($1.05 M), San Marco Resources (C$500 K), Advance Gold ($250 K), First Mining ($5 M) and GoGold (C$5 M) released information on its planned or undergoing financing rounds. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Argonaut Gold filed the PFS report on the Cerro del Gallo in Guanajuato. Azure Minerals released good drilling results from the Loma Bonita deposit at its Alacrán property in Sonora. Prime Mining released good results of road cuts and trenches at its Guadalupe de Los Reyes project in Sinaloa. Premier Gold Mines reported on the development of the Lupita Extension ore body at its Mercedes mine in Sonora. Starcore International is drilling the Santa Elena target at its San Martin mine in Queretaro.    ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Consolidated Zinc is dealing with a legal issue regarding claims for compensation from a former mining contractor. Sierra Metals announced the settlement on an outstanding litigation regarding mining concessions within its Bolivar mine in Chihuahua. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY. Minera San Xavier donated two water concessions to the Cerro San Pedro municipality in San Luis Potosí. Minera Peñasquito donated agriculture equipment to farmers in Mazapil, Zacatecas, valued at over $9 M pesos ($480 K).

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Fernando Alanís Ortega, Camimex president, urged that the use of the Mining Fund should stick for its creation purpose, like helping municipalities on infrastructure. In 2019 a change was approved by Congress, by which in March 2020 the funds are to be delivered to the Secretaría de Educación Pública (Education Secretariat) for school remodelling. Camimex is to stay working in keeping the mining sector united, better the industry public perception and to find the way to develop a public policy that incentives mining.
  • Mexico’s Mining production decreased during November 2019. Mining production decreased 1.9% from November 2018 to November 2019, gold decreased 5.2%, silver 1.7%, lead 3.8%, zinc 3.4%, fluorite 11.4%, coke 19.2%, coal 9%, while copper production increased by 1.8%.
  • UNAM (Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México) has a new major at its Juriquilla unit in Queretaro. This Earth Sciences studies at this facilities are focused on two themes: The Solid Earth and Environmental Geology.
  • The Cluster Minero de Sonora presented its annual report and guidelines for 2020, in Hermosillo. The event counted with the participation of members, industry leaders and state and federal level officials, which were exposed to the different objectives the Sonora Mining Cluster has planned for the year.
  • The Supreme Court discarded the amparo review that acknowledges the strike in Sombrerete, Zacatecas. According to the publication, the ruling obliges Grupo Mexico to recognize the strike that started on the San Martin mine in July 2007.
  • The Sindicato Nacional de Trabajadores de la Exploración, Explotación y Beneficio de Minas en la República Mexicana posted a letter on the San Martin mine in Zacatecas. In this letter the union states that the Supreme Court ruling that debunks its representativeness is not final, and can be appealed. Furthermore, the ownership procedure is independent of the termination of the strike dated august 2018, and that it is false that the mine facilities have to be surrendered. The Union has the solid commitment to fight all the legal battles needed to make the voice of hundreds of miners to be heard.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Advance Gold Corp. completed the third phase of a geophysical study campaign at its Tabasqueña property in Zacatecas. The survey expanded the length of a chargeability anomaly to 3,200 x 500 m. “The second hole currently being drilled on the chargeability anomaly has intersected 24 metres of quartz vein above the anomaly”.
  • Minera Alamos Inc. provided confirmation of significant disseminated mineralization at the Divisadero discovery at its Santana project in Sonora. Significant drill intersections from 2018-2019 comprise: 95.7 m @ 0.85 gpt Au, 10 gpt Ag, 0.33% Cu; 96.4 m @ 0.42 gpt Au, 4 gpt Ag, 0.12% Cu; 133.6 m @ 0.56 gpt Au, 6 gpt Ag, 0.16% Cu.
  • Canuc Resources Corp. released results from surface rock samples at its San Javier property in Sonora. Highlighted results comprise: 0.6 m @ 1.8 gpt Au, 11 gpt Ag; 0.6 m @ 0.33 gpt Au, 114 gpt Ag; 0.8 m @ 17.9 gpt Au, 11 gpt Ag; 1.1 m @ 11.6 gpt Au, 99 gpt Ag; 0.4 m @ 3.1 gpt Au, 138 gpt Ag; 1.1 m @ 4.13 gpt Au, 197 gpt Ag; 0.6 m @ 0.65 gpt Au, 170 gpt Ag; 0.5 m @ 0.02 gpt Au, 182 gpt Ag; 0.4 m @ 0.28 gpt Au, 262 gpt Ag; 0.9 m @ 0.02 gpt Au, 192 gpt Ag; 0.3 m @ 0.19 gpt Au, 399 gpt Ag; 1.5 m @ 0.13 gpt Au, 239 gpt Ag; 1.4 m @ 0.02 gpt Au, 705 gpt Ag; 1.6 m @ 0.02 gpt Au, 578 gpt Ag. These results confirm the extension of the mineralized structures over the three kilometers of strike length of the mining concessions held by Canuc.
  • Minaurum Gold Inc. acquired historical data including mine maps, sections and results of 40 holes (6,099 m) drilled at its Alamos Silver project in Sonora. The holes were drilled between the 1960’s and 1980’s, and focused on the Promontorio and Minas Nuevas underground mines. The results indicate that the deposits included multiple veins and continue at depth and along strike. It is estimated that 200 M Oz Ag were mined from the Quintera, Promontorio and Minas Nuevas mines. Highlighted results from the Promontorio mine comprise 1.2 m @ 5,588 gpt Ag; 1.2 m @ 1,008 gpt Ag; 4.6 m @ 2,838 gpt Ag; 4.6 m @ 305 gpt Ag; 1.4 m @ 377 gpt Ag; 12.2 m @ 710 gpt Ag; 7.6 m @ 747 gpt Ag; 11.3 m @ 785 gpt Ag; 1 m @ 2,177 gpt Ag; 1.2 m @ 854 gpt Ag, 23 gpt Au. Highlighted results from the Promontorio mine include 1.7 m @ 452 gpt Ag, 2 m @ 367 gpt Ag, 1.8 m @ 839 gpt Ag. The results indicate that the deposits included multiple veins and continue at depth and along strike. It is estimated that 200 M Oz Ag were mined from the Quintera, Promontorio and Minas Nuevas mines.
  • Colibri Resource Corp. has contracted Major drilling for the maiden drilling program at Evelyn, in Sonora. Drilling is to test to main corridors, Cerro Rojo and El Sahuaro. Activities are to start as soon as the relevant permit is received.

ON MINING

  • GoGold Resources Inc. released financial results for Q4 2019. During the period the company had revenue of $9.3 M, net income of $535 K, producing 585 K Oz Ag at cash cost $12.54 and AISC $14.59 per AgEq Oz. By the end of the period the company had $5 M in cash.
  • Americas Gold and Silver Corp. announced that a group of individuals, including a small minority of the company’s unionized workers, illegally blockaded access to facilities at its Cosalá operations in Sinaloa. “The Company has already filed the legal motions with the Government of Mexico at the state and federal levels but remains receptive to having good‐faith discussions with the proper representatives of the certified union”. Mining and processing operations have been temporarily halted.
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd. presented its quarterly activities report for Q4 2019. During the period 9,062 tonnes @ 16.1% Zn, 8.4% Pb were mined, 11,712 tonnes @ 16.1% Zn, 8.4% Pb were processed. Cash cost per Lb Zn was $1.48. The cash balance at the end of the period was US$556 K plus concentrate receivables of US$617 K.
  • Hecla Mining Co. presented fourth quarter and full year 2019 financial and operating results, including figures from its Mexican operations. At San Sebastian, in Durango, 422.4 K Oz Ag, 3,897 Oz Au were produced at cash cost $8.89 and AISC $11.78 per Oz Ag in Q4, 2019; while 1.87 M Oz Ag, 15,673 Oz Au were produced at cash cost $8.02 and AISC $12.10 per Oz Ag during the full year 2019. Operations in San Sebastian have transitioned from higher grade open pit to underground production, with the mill operating at a daily rate of 425 tpd for the quarter and 479 tpd for the year. “The Company is completing its study on the Hugh Zone sulfide ore and expects a decision on development in the first quarter, which would allow production to begin by the end of the year”.
  • Mexus Gold US. announced that gold production is continuing at its Santa Elena mine in Sonora (not to mistake by First Majestic’s Santa Elena mine, also in Sonora).
  • United States Antimony Corp. initiated pilot phase precious metal production at its Los Juarez property in Queretaro. The procedure involves crushing, flotation and cyanide leach of the ore.

ON FINANCING

  • Sonoro Metals Corp. announced “discussions regarding project debt finance and engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contracts with China-based EPC companies continue to advance”. (Cerro Caliche, Sonora).
  • Ridgestone Mining Inc. intends to complete a non-brokered private placement for up to $1.05 M in gross proceeds (Rebeico, Sonora).
  • San Marco Resources Inc. announced that its non-brokered private placement intended to raise C$500 K has been over-subscribed, and now is to total C$717 K in gross proceeds (project 1068, Sonora).
  • Advance Gold Corp. is to undertake a non-brokered private placement, aiming to raise gross proceeds of $250 K (Tabasqueña, Zacatecas).
  • First Mining Gold Corp. intends to complete a non-brokered placement for aggregate gross proceeds of up to $5M, with some insiders of the company participating. (Miranda, Sonora; Lachatao, Oaxaca).
  • GoGold Resources Inc. entered into an agreement with Sprott Capital Partners LP and PI Financial Corp. as co-lead underwriters, along with BMO Capital Markets, pursuant to which they agreed to purchase on a bought deal basis units of the company for gross proceeds of C$5 M (Los Ricos, Jalisco).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Argonaut Gold Inc. filed the technical report for the Pre-Feasibility Study (PFS) on the Cerro del Gallo project in Guanajuato.
  • Azure Minerals Ltd. released good results from infill and extension drilling on the Loma Bonita deposit at its Alacrán project in Sonora. Highlighted intervals include 126 m @ 1.96 gpt Au, 26 gpt Ag (including 64.5 m @ 2.8 gpt Au, which includes 34.5 m @ 3.94 gpt Au, 60 gpt Ag) in an infill hole; 36 m @ 1.0 gpt Au, 13 gpt Ag on an expansion drill hole.
  • Prime Mining Corp. released results from new trenches and road cuts on the Zapote North and South deposits at its Guadalupe de Los Reyes project in Sinaloa. Highlighted Road cuts results comprise 30 m @ 2.87 gpt Au, 42 gpt Ag; 43.5 m @ 1.24 gpt Au, 13 gpt Ag; 22.5 m @ 0.87 gpt Au, 14 gpt Ag; 37.5 m @ 3.9 gpt Au, 36 gpt Ag; 16.5 m @ 0.66 gpt Au, 8 gpt Ag; 12 m @ 1.56 gpt Au, 14 gpt Ag; 6 m @ 11.72 gpt Au, 26 gpt Ag. Underground adit sampling returned 10.5 m @ 0.58 gpt Au, 18 gpt Ag; 10.5 m @ 1.32 gpt Au, 26 gpt Ag; 22.5 m @ 3.23 gpt Au, 68 gpt Ag.
  • Premier Gold Mines Ltd. reported progress ahead of schedule on the “development of the Lupita Extension underground development” at its Mercedes mine in Sonora…. During 2019, a successful delineation program of 87 drill holes extended the known Lupita mineralization along a strike length of 300 m. A clear difference between the two Lupita areas are the noticeable higher grade and width in Lupita Extension versus Lupita as well as the steeper dipping geometry of about 50 degrees. The delineation drilling program returned an average true width of 2.9 m of 5.56 g/t Au length-weighted average grade“.
  • Starcore International Mines Ltd. has started drilling the Santa Elena target at its San Martin mine in Queretaro. “The Company is conducting an exploration program that will consist of 10 holes between 200 to 400 meters each targeting the Santa Elena vein, which is thought to be a mirror of the San Martin vein(s), a typical epithermal gold-silver deposit characterized by low sulfation (sic)”.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • First Majestic Silver Corp. announced the appointment of Mr. Steve Holmes to the role of Chief Operating Officer (San Dimas, Durango; Santa Elena, Sonora).
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd. informed on legal proceedings by its former mining contractor at the Plomosas mine in Chihuahua. Caminos y Construcciones Ganti S.A. de C.V. is suing CZL for final outstanding costs MXN$23.63 M, including VAT. CZL has presented counterclaims totaling MXN$89.15 M. On January 31, 2020, Ganti representatives seized control of the physical inventory at the third party Aldama plant. (Plomosas mine, Chihuahua).
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd. stated that it has succeeded in legal action to end the intimidation and excessive actions of Caminos and Construcciones Ganti S.A. de C.V.. Ganti was CZL’s mining contractor “until they were terminated on the 25 November 2019, in accordance with their contract”. Ignoring the contracted conflict resolution procedures, Ganti submitted legal proceedings in the Federal District Court of Chihuahua. On 4 February the Court rescinded the orders given to Ganti (Plomosas mine, Chihuahua).
  • Tamino Minerals Inc. informed the company has plans to make acquisitions (El Volcán, Sonora).
  • Sierra Metals Inc. announced the settlement of the outstanding litigation with Polo y Ron pertaining mining concessions where mine operations and mineral reserves estimates are located on its Bolivar mine in Chihuahua. “The impact of the settlement amount paid on Sierra Metals’ financial condition and operating results is not significant”.

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • Minera San Xavier is donating two water concessions to the Cerro San Pedro municipality, in San Luis Potosi. The concessions add up to 480 thousand cubic meters of water per year. The use of the resource is exclusively for the communities of Cerro de San Pedro, La Zapatilla, Divisadero, Planta del Carmen, Granjas de San Francisco, Monte Caldera, Cuesta de Campa, Calderón y Jesús Maria, all within the Cerro San Pedro Municipality.
  • Minera Peñasquito supports farmers in Zacatecas. The Newmont GoldCorp subsidiary delivered agriculture machinery to El Vergel producers. In collaboration with the Instituto Nacional de Investigaciones Forestales Agrícolas y Pecuarias (INIFAP), the equipment valued at more than nine million pesos (US$480 K) is to benefit more than 400 inhabitants of Mazapil, Zacatecas.

Content like what you have just read can be seen at https://gambusinoprospector.com/ and at LinkedIn’s Mexico Mineral Exploration Group.

On the image below: Twentieth Century tauna on a stream in Oaxaca, picture by Jorge Cirett.

225a

The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the Fifth Week of January, 2020.

Sulphur crystals in an epithermal hot spring system

By Miguel A Heredia

During the fifth week of the year (January 27th to February 2nd, 2020), at least 33 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico, with nine discussing issues on social responsibility, eight disclosing deals and corporate issues, five communicating production results, four announcing financial rounds, three reporting on resources and developments, three informing on exploration results, and one commenting on Mexican issues.  ON MEXICO ISSUES, Jorge Vidal Ahumada, Minister of Economy of Sonora State, announced that more of USD $500M will be invested in Sonora in 2020.  ON EXPLORATION, In Sonora, Ridgestone reported high-grade rock sampling from its Rebeico project, and Azure provided a report of the activities carried out during the period Q4, 2019 at its Sara Alicia project. In Chihuahua, Consolidated Zinc identified a high-grade Au system nearby its Plomosas mine.  ON MINING, Excellon, and Santacruz announced Q4 and annual 2019 production results from their Mexican operations. Telson resumed full scale mining and milling operation at its Campo Morado mine in Guerrero. Mexus reported that additional material has been crushed and placed on the leach pad at its Santa Elena mine in Sonora.  Endeavour provided 2020 production and cost guidance for their Mexican mining operations.  ON FINANCING, Azure completed a $4M placement to conduct an aggressive exploration program on its Alacrán project in Sonora, and also announced that it received payments for MXP $16.5M from the Mexican Tax Office for the recovery of IVA (GST). Millrock announced its plan to conduct a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of up to $1M (Batamote project, Sonora). Gold Resource declared January 2020 monthly dividend for its shareholders (Arista mine, Oaxaca).  Telson has been marketing a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds for up to CAD $3M (Campo Morado mine, Guerrero).  ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Azure announced results from the activities performed at its Alacrán and Oposura project in Sonora in the period Q4, 2019. Great Panther announced 2019 exploration results and 2020 plans for its Mexican operations. Minera Alamos entered into a purchase agreement to acquire a crushing system for its Santana mine in Sonora. Endeavour updated 2019 mineral reserve and resource estimate for its three Au-Ag Mexican mines. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Bacanora Lithium announced results from its annual general meeting of shareholders (Bacanora project, Sonora). Plata Latina entered into an agreement with Electrum for its three Mexican properties (Vaquerias, Palo Alto, and La Joya). Minaurum signed an option to acquire 100% of the Aurifero Gold project in Sonora, expanding its land control in the Alamos mining district. Mexican Gold announced that it entered into a binding letter agreement to complete business combination with New Found Gold (Las Minas, Veracruz). Equinox Gold and Leagold shareholders approved merger to create a premier Americas Au producer (Los Filos mine, Guerrero). Minera Alamos entered into a purchase agreement to acquire a crushing system for its Santana mine in Sonora. Mithril announced results from their 2019 activities, which consisted mainly on the Sun Minerals acquisition and the exclusive option to acquire 100% of the Copalquin project in Durango. Fortuna provided an update on the status of disputed royalty in one of its extractive mining concessions in its San Jose mine in Oaxaca. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY, The Mexican President, Luis Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) thanked Peñoles for joining the program “Youth Building the Future”. Governor of Sonora, Claudia Pavlovich Arellano, opened the Community House of Argonaut Gold Inc in La Colorada, Sonora. A labor agreement between the municipality of Guadalupe and Calvo, Chihuahua and Fresnillo plc (San Julian mining company) was signed to hire personnel to work at the mine. Fresnillo plc demonstrates Social Responsibility since it works on four strategic axes including education, health, capacity development, and environmental care. Grupo Mexico delivered seed capital in Nueva Rosita, Coahuila, and presented a large urban development project for San Luis Potosi. Minera Media Luna (Torex Gold) supported local communities nearby its Mexican mining operation in Guerrero with medical equipment. Minera Peñasquito (Newmont Goldcorp) delivered tractors and agricultural equipment to the inhabitants of the Ejido El Vergel in the municipality of Mazapil, Zacatecas. Newmont Goldcorp was recognized for its high social, environmental and corporate governance performance, which places it as a leader in the mining sector worldwide.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • The Minister of Economy of Sonora, Jorge Vidal Ahumada announced that more than USD $500M will be invested in Sonora in the mining sector in 2020.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Ridgestone Mining Inc., reported high-grade rock sampling results of 188 samples collected at its Rebeico project in Sonora in an area of 200m by 100m with widths between 1-3m. Highlights include up to 12.95 g/t Au, with 8 samples returning > 4 g/t Au, 30 samples returning > 1 g/t Au, and 33 samples returning between 0.1-1.0 g/t Au. It also reported that 73 samples returned >0.1% Cu, with 14 samples returning >0.4% Cu with a peak of 0.65% Cu. High Bi values associated with Au and Cu suggests a proximal intrusion-related mineralized system. Mineralization is hosted by brecciated andesite with variable amounts of gossan ± magnetite ± quartz, as well as chloritized and fractured andesites peripheral to the brecciated zones.
  • Azure Minerals Limited, provided a report of the activities carried out during the period Q4, 2019 at its Sara Alicia project in Sonora. It acquired 100% of the Sara Alicia II mining concession. Azure had acquired the original Sara Alicia mining concession in 2017 but also it was recognized that a second, adjoining mining concession named Sara Alicia II had been cancelled by the mining registry. After almost 2 years later, the Federal Appeal Court ruled the cancellation was invalid and title of the concession was restored to a local Mexican family who had owned both Sara Alicia mining concessions since the 1930s. For a consideration of USD $80K, a purchase agreement between the owners and Azure was executed and 100% ownership of the Sara Alicia II concession was transferred to Azure. With the control of the ground now confirmed, the company plans to conduct geological mapping, sampling and a geophysical survey in H1, 2020.
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd, identified with regional exploration, a high-grade Au system located 3 -5Km NW of its Plomosas mine. Rock chip sampling at La Chona-Enrique and Potrero targets returned encouraging results with grades of 2.55 g/t Au; 4.77 g/t Au; 7.42 g/t Au; 27.5 g/t Au, and 61 g/t Au, and 2.19% Cu; 2.88% Cu, 2.91% Cu, and 4.06% Cu. La Chona-Enrique areas consist of narrow quartz-calcite-hematite veins with malachite from 0.3-1.2m wide, which have been interpreted to be mesothermal in origin. Potrero target consists of a dominant felsic intrusive that appears to be responsible of the brecciation and alteration of the host rock. Mapping and sampling of these target areas is ongoing in order to define drill targets.

ON MINING

  • Excellon Resources Inc., announced Q4 and annual 2019 production results from its Platosa mine in Durango. The company mined 19,622 tonnes and processed 19,828 tonnes of 435 g/t Ag, 4.8% Pb, and 6.4% Zn, recovering 91.7%, 80.2%, and 76.5% respectively to produce 259.3K Oz Ag, 1.7M Lb Pb, and 2M Lb Zn. During the full year, the company mined 74,876 tonnes and processed 75,247 tonnes of 497 g/t Ag, 4.8% Pb, and 6.9% Zn, recovering 89.9%, 79.4%, and 80.8% respectively, to produce 1.05M Oz Ag, 6.1M Lb Pb, and 8.4M Lb Zn.
  • Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd., reported Q4 and full year 2019 production and financial results from their Zimapan, Veta Grande and Rosario mining operations. During Q4, 2019, the company processed from its Zimapan mine in Hidalgo State, 161,071 tonnes of 72 g/t Ag, recovering 66.4%, to produce 248.6K Oz Ag, 1.56M Lb Pb, 5.8M Lb Zn, and 1.1M Lb Cu (996K Oz AgEq at a grade of 282 g/t AgEq). During the full year 2019, the company processed 243, 313 tonnes of 73 g/t Ag, recovering 69.9%, to produce 400K Oz Ag, 2.6M Lb Pb, 9.1M Lb Zn, and 1.8M Lb Cu (1.6M Oz AgEq at a grade of 284 g/t AgEq). From its Veta Grande mine in Zacatecas, it processed 36,111 tonnes of 102 g/t Ag, recovering 45%, to produce 53.6K Oz Ag, 116 Oz Au, 620K Lb Pb, and 1.2M Lb Zn (193.7K Oz AgEq at a grade of 297 g/t AgEq). During the full year 2019, it processed 149.9K tonnes of 105 g/t Ag, recovering 47.1%, to produce 237.7K Oz Ag, 457 Oz Au, 2.4M Lb Pb, and 4.4M Lb Zn (761K Oz AgEq at a grade of 286 g/t AgEq). During Q4,2019 Santacruz processed from its Rosario mine in San Luis Potosi, 22,972 tonnes of 64 g/t Ag, recovering 90.6%, to produce 43.1K Oz Ag, 163 Oz Au, 195K Lb Pb, and 849K Lb Zn (134.5K Oz AgEq at a grade of 214 g/t AgEq). During the full year 2019, it processed 76,088 tonnes of 65 g/t Ag, recovering 93.4%, to produce 149.7K Oz Ag, 642.9K Lb Pb, and 3M Lb Zn (465.6K Oz AgEq at a grade of 218 g/t AgEq).
  • Telson Mining Corporation, resumed full scale mining and milling operation at its Campo Morado mine in Guerrero. The initial production after resuming operations is for 1,750 tonnes per day but intending to increase it to 2,000 tonnes per day or more in the coming weeks.
  • Mexus Gold US, crushed and placed additional material from Don Julio vein on the heap leaching pad of its Santa Elena mine in Sonora. The Julio and Lucky Strike open pit keep expanding with 1.2-9 g/t Au and an overall average of 4 g/t Au.
  • Endeavour Silver Corp., provided 2020 production and cost guidance for its Mexican mining operations. The table below shows figures for each of its three Au-Ag mines in Mexico:

Endeavour also announced that it plans to spend $5.4M drilling 18,500m of core on brownfield projects, greenfield exploration and development of its mines and projects.

ON FINANCING

  • Azure Minerals Limited, completed a $4M placement to conduct an aggressive exploration program on its Alacrán project in Sonora. Gross proceeds will be used to perform drilling to increase mineral resources at its Bonita deposit, conduct greenfield exploration and target definition at its Alacrán project, and to restart metallurgical testwork on its Mesa de Plata and Loma Bonita deposits. The company also mentioned that it received payments for MXP $ 16.5M from the Mexican Tax Office for the recovery of IVA (GST).
  • Millrock Resources Inc., announced its plan to raise gross proceeds from a non-brokered private placement for up to $1M (Batamote project, Sonora). Gross proceeds will be used to advance exploration on their current projects as well as to generate new ones.
  • Gold Resource Corporation, declared January 2020 monthly dividend of one-third of a cent per common share for its shareholders (Arista mine, Oaxaca).
  • Telson Mining Corporation, has been marketing a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds for up to CAD $3M. It has completed subscription agreements for total proceeds of approximately CAD $1.89M and is planning to conduct a first tranche initial closing on proceeds ones the TSX approve it (Campo Morado mine, Guerrero).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  •  Azure Minerals Limited, announced results from the activities performed at its Alacran and Oposura project in Sonora in the period Q4, 2019. At Alacrán, the company commenced an RC infill and expansion drilling program at its Loma Bonita deposit which is open for expansion in several directions. The goal is to increase the current Au and Ag resources which count for 32.2M Oz Ag and 150K Oz Au. To date, 10 RC holes have been collared and the most significant drill intersects are in hole MDPD-025 with 0.56 g/t Au and 27 g/t Ag over 29.6m: hole MDPD-035 with 0.37 g/t Au and 8 g/t Ag over 12.6m; and hole ALA-17-004 with 0.47 g/t Au and 27 g/t Ag over 63.0m. The company also reported channel sampling results of a road cutting in Loma Bonita which returned 3.6 g/t Au over continuous 35.5m wide, and several high grades results from the sampling of historical mine dumps located 11.5-2km S and SE of the Cerro El Alacrán porphyry hosted Cu-Au-Mo ore body. 21 samples were collected with 10 samples returning > 1 Kg Ag (average of 1.07Kg Ag/t), 17 samples with >1 g/t Au (average of 4.43 g/t Au), 10 samples returning over 1% Cu (average of 0.95% Cu), 12 samples returning > 10% Pb (average of 14.9% Pb), and 10 samples returning  over 10% Zn(average of 9.3% Zn). At Oposura, Azure continued to trial, asses and advance several processing for producing saleable bulk concentrate of 35% Zn, 20% Pb, and 140 g/t Ag, as well as to produce separate high grade Zn and Pb concentrates. It also is considering off-take options for direct shipping ore and bulk concentrates.
  • Great Panther Mining Limited, announced 2019 exploration results and provided 2020 plans for its Mexican mining operations. At San Ignacio mine, Guanajuato, the company drilled 7,535 m in 30 in-fill holes. Most significant drill intersections were encountered in hole ESI19-253 with 2.84 g/t Au and 125 g/t Ag (352 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 1.15m; hole ESI19-254 with 5.78 g/t Au and 6 g/t Ag (469 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 1.20m; hole ESI19-267 with 3.69 g/t Au and 191 g/t Ag (486 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 1.09m; hole ESI19-276 with 1.63 g/t Au and 292 g/t Ag (422 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 1.38m; and hole ESI19-277 with 20.53 g/t Au and 816 g/t Ag (2,458 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 0.59m. 2020 plans for San Ignacio will comprise up to 8,500m of in-fill drilling as well as to test additional exploration targets. An update of the mineral resource estimate will be presented in Q1, 2020. At its Guanajuato mine, the company took the decision to put on hold the production in 2019 in order to focus on finding higher grade resources. Great Panther drilled 126 in-fill holes for a total of 8,832 m., mainly underground. Additionally, the company geologists have re-mapped and sampled most accessible areas to develop multiple targets. Significant drill intersection were encountered in hole UGPM19-017 with 1.3 g/t Au and 364 g/t Ag (468 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 3.52m; hole UGPM19-020 with 3.93 g/t Au and 77 g/t Ag (398 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 5.63m: hole UGP-028 with 2.58 g/t Au and 1,042 g/t Ag (1,249 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 2.51m; hole UGDP19-002 with 3.16 g/t Au and 457 g/t Ag (710 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 5.89m; hole UGDP19-013 with 4.32 g/t Au and 863 g/t Ag (1,209 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 4.96m; hole SP19-003 with 3.97 g/t Au and 1,436 g/t Ag (1,754 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 3.53m; and hole UGV19-010 with 2.45 g/t Au and 472 g/t Ag (668 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 2.30m. The 2020 in-fill drilling program will consists of 14,400m focused on building mineral resources along the Veta Madre structure. An update of the Guanajuato mineral resource estimate will be released in Q1, 2020. At its Topia mine in Durango, the company drilled 25 in-fill holes for a total of 5,344 m to build mineral resources. Significant drill intersections were encountered in hole ST19-238 with 0.28 g/t Au, 5,507 g/t Ag, 25.2% Pb, and 6% Zn (6,966 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 0.31m; hole ST19-246 with 0.31 g/t Au, 2,768 g/t Ag, 5.2% Pb, and 1.6% Zn (3,112 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 0.33m; hole ST19-249 with 0.2 g/t Au, 4,840 g/t Ag, 26.8% Pb, and 9.9% Zn (6,582 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 0.1m; and hole ST19-251 with 0.25 g/t Au, 2,099 g/t Ag, 14.2% Pb, and 12% Zn (3,411 g/t AgEq) over a true width 0.17m. The 2020 drilling program will consists of 2,500m focus on building mineral resources. Great Panther plans to release an updated mineral resource estimate in July, 2020.
  • Minera Alamos Inc., entered into a purchase agreement with Mako Mining Corp, Marlin Gold Mining Ltd., and Oro Gold de México S.A. de C.V., to acquire a complete crushing, screening, and agglomeration system to facilitate future production growth at its Santana mine in Sonora.
  • Endeavour Silver Corp., updated 2019 mineral reserve and resource estimate for its three Au-Ag Mexican mines. Mineral reserves at December 31, 2019 are shown in the below table:

Mineral resources at December 31, 2019 are shown in the below tables:

Mineral resources are exclusive of and in addition to mineral reserves.

 ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Bacanora Lithium plc, announced results from its annual general meeting of shareholders (Bacanora project, Sonora).
  • Plata Latina Minerals Corporation, entered into an agreement of assignment of mining concessions of its three Mexican properties with The Electrum Group. The three mining properties are Vaquerias, in Jalisco State which consists of two mining concessions totaling 4,411 Ha; Palo Alto, in Aguascalientes State, which comprises three mining concessions totaling 4,722 Ha; and La Joya, in Hidalgo State, which consists of one mining concession of 924 Ha. Electrum will pay USD $100K for each property, and will have exclusive rights for a period of four months to evaluate the three properties, commencing on January 20, 2020 and ending on May 20, 2020. Electrum has agreed to reimburse Plata Latina the remaining 2019 semi-semester mining duties on the three properties up to a maximum amount of USD $50K. It also will pay mining duties to cover the mining duties of the first semester 2020. Electrum has already commenced their due diligence on the properties, and will have the right to exercise its option to acquire any or all of the three properties.
  • Minaurum Gold Inc., signed a five-years option agreement to acquire 100% of the Aurifero Gold project in Sonora and expanding its land control in the Alamos mining district where its Alamos Silver project is located. “Aurifero contains a swarm of Au &-Ag-bearing epithermal veins within a NW/SE-trending zone measuring 3 km long and more than 400 m wide. Satellite imagery and ground reconnaissance geology indicate that the alteration signature is similarly widespread”. Several campaigns of shallow RC and core drilling have been conducted since the 1980s totaling over 8,000 metres, all of them averaging less than 100 m deep; the deepest reaching a vertical depth of 135 m from surface.  “There are currently a number of operators conducting small-scale mining on the project.  Under the option agreement, the miners are restricted to a maximum mining depth of 100 m”. Significant drill intercepts from historic drilling were encountered in hole DMDDH-01 with 18.37 g/t Au over 3.1m; hole 07-MN-10, with 3.12 g/t Au over 24.5m; hole CI-35 with 1.47 g/t Au over 48m; hole CI-09 with 3.65 g/t Au over 58m; and hole CI-34 with 2.42 g/t Au over 24m. The option agreement signed by Minaurum is in exchange for USD $2.7M for the 100% of a block of mining concessions which cover 1,198 Ha. The option does not include royalty.
  • Mexican Gold Corp., entered into a binding letter agreement to complete business combination with New Found Gold Corp. The resulting company will be very well capitalized and be focused on exploring and conduct multiple drilling campaigns on their properties and advance Las Minas project in Veracruz. Under the terms of the agreement, New Found is required to complete a minimum of CAD $10Mfinancing, and post-transaction, the company will have approximately CAD $19M in working capital.
  • Equinox Gold Corp., and Leagold Mining Corporation, shareholders approved merger to create a premier Americas Au producer. On closing of the transaction, Leagold will receive 0.331 of an Equinox Gold share for each Leagold share held. Current Equinox Gold and Leagold shareholders will own approximately 55% and 45% respectively of the merged company. Transaction is expected to close in February 2020, subject to approval of TSX and NYSE (Los Filos mine, Guerrero).
  • Minera Alamos Inc., entered into a purchase agreement with Mako Mining Corp, Marlin Gold Mining Ltd., and Oro Gold de México S.A. de C.V., to acquire a complete crushing, screening, and agglomeration system to facilitate future production growth at its Santana mine in Sonora. The purchase price of this agreement is for CAD $1.2M in staged payments. CAD $300K upon execution of the agreement, CAD $700K on the closing date (April 30, 2020 or such other date on or before September 30, 2020), and CAD $200K on the earlier date of the shipment of the equipment.
  • Mithril Resources Ltd., announced results from its 2019 activities, which consisted mostly on the Sun Minerals Pty Ltd acquisition and the exclusive option to acquire 100% interest in the Copalquin project in Durango. Due diligence has been completed and Mithril expects to complete the acquisition of Sun Minerals for the March 2020 quarter.
  • Fortuna Silver Mines Inc., provided an update on the status of a dispute royalty of 3% that a former owner of one of its extracting concessions in its San Jose mine in Oaxaca granted to the Mexican Geological Service (SGM). In 2018, the company, supported by legal opinions of three independent law firms, concluded that none royalty should be paid and commenced administrative and legal proceedings against the General Direction of Mines (GDM) in order to remove reference to the royalty on the title register. “Fortuna Silver has recently received notice from the GDM seeking to cancel the mining concession if the royalty, in the Mexican pesos equivalent of US$30 million plus VAT (being the amount of the claimed royalty from 2011 to 2019), is not paid before March 15, 2020. The company will be initiating legal proceedings to contest the cancellation procedure and also to stay the cancellation process. In the event that the company is unsuccessful in cancelling the action taken by the GDM or in obtaining a stay of execution, it may be required to pay, or post a bond or other security, up to the amount claimed, in order to preserve the mining concession. In that case the company would immediately thereafter proceed with dispute proceedings. If the company is required to pay the royalty or post security it will do so from available working capital”.

 ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • The Mexican President, Luis Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) thanked Peñoles, for joining the program “Youth Building the Future”, which guarantee the right to young people to study , work and be trained as good citizens. AMLO, along with the General Director of Peñoles, the Governor of Coahuila, and the Secretary of Labor gathered in Laguna Del Rey, Coahuila with 61 scholars in the frame of the celebration of the first anniversary of this program. Scholars thanked the support and the opportunity to receive training and after which they hope to get a job in Peñoles. Fernando Alaniz, General Director of Peñoles commented that this program is not only seen in the financial result sheet but also in the responsibility and commitment towards the community.
  • Governor of Sonora, Claudia Pavlovich Arellano, opened the Community House of Argonaut Gold Inc in la Colorada, where it will offer arts, music, drawing, painting, handicraft and confectionery workshops, as well as workshops of values, school for parents, addiction prevention and emotion management, all totally free for the population.
  • The municipality of Guadalupe y Calvo Chihuahua, Chihuahua and Fresnillo plc (San Julian mining company), signed a labour agreement to hire local personnel to work at the mine, based on their knowledge and qualifications. Local authorities commented that this is already a second stage of hiring, being 45 people placed in the previous one, so it is expected to place a good number of elements in this new stage.
  • Fresnillo plc, demonstrates Social Responsibility since it works on four strategic axes including education, health, capacity development, and environmental care. It has sustainability as its policy, as it is a company dedicated to the exploration, exploitation and benefit of minerals, and is committed to guaranteeing a safe and healthy place for its staff and its environment, establishing good relations with neighboring communities. In Education, 36 young people who study robotics have received support and advice, and approximately 2,600 children are being beneficiated with a program that foster the reading culture. In Health, more than 3,000 people from several communities were attended in 2019 without any cost. This social program will continue in 2020. In Capacity Development, in sports, Fresnillo has organized since 9 years ago, the 5Km race which started with 200 runners and now participate more than 2,000; it has a soccer academy, and a year ago, an agreement was signed with a professional soccer team (Santos Laguna) to grant 300 children and young people to be in the academy. The company also support in other sports such as baseball, basketball, etc.  In addition, more than 200 women from different communities are trained, who are taught courses in crafts, pastry, beauty culture, and sewing and are given the material. In addition, more than 40 people who have small businesses are trained. In Environment, Fresnillo plc takes care of the water and operates two waste water treatment plants. It also has two tree nurseries that give the year more than 70,000 trees of which a large part of them are planted in all the mines and others are donated to the community.
  • Grupo Mexico, delivered Seed Capital to inhabitants of Nueva Rosita, Coahuila, to learn a trade and improve the quality of life of people. Seed Capital is an initial financing method that aims to develop a business idea with growth possibilities and is delivered in kind. The company is providing seeds in projects that seek the growth of the communities where it has mining operations. Grupo Mexico also presented a large urban development project for San Luis Potosi. This project will generate 20,000 jobs and build 7,500 houses in an area of 470 Ha. It was also announced that the urbanization of the site where Industrial Minera Mexico operated will be a new development hub for 30,000 people and will have wind power road electricity supply and also includes the reforestation of 20,000 trees in the area. It will have shopping centers, universities, research centers and hospitals. This is the most ambitious urban project for San Luis Potosi in recent years and will start in this same 2020.
  • Minera Media Luna (Torex Gold), supported Nuevo Balsas and surrounding communities nearby its Mexican mining operations in Guerrero with high-tech medical equipment delivered to the NGO “Curando Mexico”.   This social program “Curando México” aims to offer the most vulnerable population an accessible high quality health service.
  • Minera Peñasquito (Newmont Goldcorp), invested MXP $9M and delivered tractors and agricultural equipment to the inhabitants of the El Vergel Ejido, located in the municipality of Mazapil, Zacatecas. This project began three years ago, however, with the delivery of seven tractors and agricultural equipment, such as threshing machines and harvesters, among others, a new stage will begin in the cultivation fields of the region. Other actions that were carried out were preparing farmland, operating wells, technifying the irrigation system, as well as providing the inhabitants of El Vergel with seeds to cultivate.
  • Newmont Goldcorp, was recognized for its high social, environmental and corporate governance performance, which places it as a leader in the mining sector worldwide. Newmont was recognized by 3 independent entities for their high managerial performance, social responsibility, and coordinated actions to combat climate change and the promotion of women in the workplace. Newmont scored high in a variety of dimensions, including quality management, social responsibility, long-term investment, personnel management and innovation.

Content like what you have just read can be seen at https://gambusinoprospector.com/ and at LinkedIn’s Mexico Mineral Exploration Group.

On the picture above, sulphur crystals in an epithermal hot spring prospect in Guanajuato, Mexico.  Photo by Miguel A Heredia.

 

The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the Fourth Week of January, 2020

204

By Jorge Cirett

During the 4th week of the year (January 20th to January 26th, 2020), at least 22 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. ON MEXICO ISSUES, Highlights on some advanced projects were shared, including Ermitaño, Santana, Media Luna and La Colorada skarn. A good week for Mexican mining companies on the Bolsa Mexicana de Valores (BMV), with share price increments for Grupo Mexico, Industrias Peñoles, Orbia (Mexichem) and Cemex. The president of Mexico stated no mining concessions for lithium have been granted under his term.  ON EXPLORATION, in Sonora, Riverside reported good surface sampling results from its El Cuarenta project; Minaurum completed the phase I drilling program at its Alamos Silver project, testing 19 of 25 identified vein systems; Mexus Gold is looking to JV its Mabel and Ures properties. In Zacatecas, Advance Gold released results from the first hole at a chargeability anomaly in its Tabasqueña project. In Hidalgo, Santacruz Mining staked the Lechuga property.  ON MINING, Argonaut Gold, Coeur Mining, Gold Resource, Premier Gold, Sierra Metals, and First Majestic released production results for Q4 and full year 2019.  ON FINANCING, Silver Spruce filed an amendment at the TSX regarding the Cocula project in Jalisco. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Minera Alamos announced construction is ongoing at its Santana project in Sonora. Argonaut Gold informed it is reviewing its option on the San Antonio project in Baja California Sur, whereas at Cerro del Gallo in Guanajuato the company is to produce a corrected bundle of documents to re-submit to the authorities for authorization. Silver Crest released high grade results from the Babi Sur vein at its Las Chispas property in Sonora. Impact Silver released good surface sampling results on two veins at an open pit at its Zacualpan property in Estado de Mexico. Mexus Gold started mining a new zone at its Santa Elena mine in Sonora. GoGold released results from nine more holes at its Los Ricos project in Jalisco. Mexican Gold released drilling results from its Las Minas project in Veracruz. Prime Mining announced surface results from road cuts and trenches from its Los Reyes project in Sinaloa. GR Silver Mining updated on its exploration results at its San Marcial project in Sinaloa.   ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Leagold was advised to vote favorably on a proposed merge with Equinox. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY. The Mining Fund allocated the resources for rehabilitation of a sports field in Santa Barbara, Chihuahua. Esperanza Silver is to apply a new model of mining on the development of the Esperanza mine, in Morelos. Minera San Xavier formalized the transference of its silver’s jewelry shop to one of its employees in Cerro San Pedro, San Luis Potosi. The Guerrero government, the Municipality of Cocula and Torex Gold are to pave a road in Cocula.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Some new projects highlights: First Majestic initiated a 3,000 m development program designed to get the Ermitaño project in Sonora into production by early 2021. Ermitaño is 4 km from First Majestic’s Santa Elena mine. Minera Alamos has started construction of its Santana mine in Sonora, where it expects to start producing gold later in the year from heap leach operations. Torex Gold released a new resource estimation for its Media Luna project in Guerrero, with 12.6 M tonnes @ 5.55 gpt Au Eq containing 2.24 M Oz AuEq as indicated resources, and 33.5 M tonnes @ 4.23 gpt Au Eq containing 4.56 Oz AuEq as inferred resources. The capital needed to take this project into production is estimated at US496 M, to reach a yearly production of 170 K Oz Au, 1.7 M Oz Ag and 21 K tonnes Cu. The giant La Colorada skarn discovery by Pan American Silver in Zacatecas has an initial inferred resource base of 73.5 M tonnes containing 102 M Oz Ag, 3.2 M tonnes Zn, 1.5 M tonnes Pb and 121 K tonnes Cu. The project is to see 44,000 m of drilling during 2020, with a cost of US$7.5 M.
  • Listed mining companies in the Mexican Stock Exchange (Bolsa Mexicana de Valores, or BMV) had a good week. Grupo Mexico was up 5.9%, Industrias Peñoles 1.9%, Orbia (Mexichem) 5.75% and Cemex 8.91%.
  • The president of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador (also known as AMLO) assured this week that no concession has been delivered on his term for lithium exploitation. (In fact, the delivery of all mining concessions has been halted indefinitely by the actual government).

ON EXPLORATION

  • Riverside Resources Inc. reported on surface sampling and field work at its El Cuarenta project in Sonora. Three prospective targets were identified: Santa Rosalía, Santa Rosalía Sur and El Sombrero, with sampling returning five samples of sixteen above 5 gpt Au, and a best result of 25.7 gpt Au. The Santa Rosalía target consists of multiple sub-parallel low sulfide quartz veins on a fault zone 1 Km long in volcanic rocks. At Santa Rosalía Sur there is an 800 m long structural zone in volcanic rocks with shallow dipping sheeted quartz veins showing banded quartz and lattice textures. El Sombrero displays extensive alteration and high temperature alteration minerals like dickite, pyrophyllite and kaolinite, as well as a highly silicified cap.
  • Minaurum Gold Inc. completed its phase I drill program at the Alamos Silver project in Sonora, testing 19 of the 25 identified vein systems with 18,810 m in 40 holes.. Fourteen of the nineteen vein systems returned high-grade silver intercepts, on a 10 km long by 6 km wide corridor. Highlighted intervals from the last round of drilling comprise: 7.60 m @ 155 gpt Ag, including 2.15 m @ 470 gpt Ag; 0.20 m @ 367 gpt Ag, 6.75 gpt Au, 1.35% Cu, 0.59% Pb, 0.56% Zn at the Púlpito and Cotera veins. 6.60 m @ 1.94% Cu, 0.5% Pb, 1.5% Zn at the Alessandra vein. 1.1 m @ 729 gpt Ag, 1.73 gpt Au, 0.13% Cu, 3.0% Pb, 5.7% Zn at the Promontorio vein. 0.50 m @ 160 gpt Ag at La Dura vein. 1.05 m @ 245 gpt Ag, 0.74% Cu, 0.4% Pb, 0.7% Zn at Las Animas vein. And 7.35 m @ 47 gpt Ag on the Rosario vein. “Phase II is expected to commence in late-March and will include a minimum of 20,000 m of drilling”.
  • Mexus Gold US. is to look for a JV on its Mabel and Ures properties in Sonora. The Mabel property has 611 holes in 6 drilling campaigns since 2002. In the Ures property the targets are a porphyry copper system and high grade silver.
  • Advance Gold Corp. released drill results from one drill hole at its Tabasqueña project in Zacatecas. The first hole into a 1000 x 500 m chargeability anomaly returned 78 m of continuous zinc mineralization, including 1.10 m @ 1.88% Zn, 1.40% Pb, 77 gpt Ag, 0.20 gpt Au and 34 m @ 23 gpt Au, and 1.10 m @ 101 gpt Ag, 0.59% Pb, 0.74% Zn.

ON MINING

  • Argonaut Gold Inc. released production results for 2019 and the fourth quarter 2019. During 2019 the company produced 186,615 Oz AuEq, with 47,521 Oz AuEq produced during the Q4. During the same quarter production at El Castillo complex in Durango was 34,899 Oz AuEq (13,896 Oz AuEq from El Castillo and 21,003 Oz AuEq from San Agustin), and 12,622 Oz AuEq at La Colorada, in Sonora. For 2019, total production was 131,727 Oz AuEq at El Castillo Complex and 55,338 Oz AuEq at La Colorada.
  • Coeur Mining Inc. announced production results for full year 2019 and fourth quarter 2019, including figures from Mexico. At Palmarejo, in Chihuahua, 1.76 M tonnes were milled @ 2.49 gpt Au, 151 gpt Ag, recovering 84.3% Au, 79.3% Ag, to produce 111,932 Oz Au, 6.84 M Oz Ag during the year. During the last quarter 486.8 K tonnes were milled @ 2.18 gpt Au, 159 gpt Ag, recovering 84.9% Au, 81.7% Ag, to produce 28,702 Oz Au, 1.98 M Oz Ag.
  • Gold Resource Corp. provided full-year 2019 and fourth quarter 2019 production results, including figures from its Mexican operations. Production for 2019 in its Oaxaca Mining Unit was 29,435 Oz Au, 1.7 M Oz Ag, 1,859 tonnes Cu, 9,202 tonnes Pb, 23,683 tonnes Zn; during the first quarter 7,554 Oz Au, 417.9 K Oz Ag were produced.
  • Premier Gold Mines Ltd. released production results for the fourth quarter and full year 2019, including figures from its Mexican operations. At Mercedes, 12,274 Oz Au, 44.8 K Oz Ag were produced during the fourth quarter, adding up to 59,901 Oz Au, 191.3 K Oz Ag for the year. The production Guidance for 2020 is 65-75 K Oz Au at cash cost $850-$875 per Oz and all-in sustaining costs of $1,125-$1,275 per Oz.
  • Sierra Metals Inc. reported fourth quarter and full year 2019 production results, including figures from its Mexican operations. At Bolivar, in Chihuahua, 348.4 K tonnes were processed at a 3,982 tpd rate and a grade of 0.87% Cu, 21 gpt Ag, 0.32 gpt Au, recovering 84.8% Cu, 78.7% Ag, 62.3% Au to produce 5.66 M Lb Cu, 185 K Oz Ag, 2,216 Oz Au during the fourth quarter; and 1.27 M tonnes were processed at a rate of 3,628 tpd @ 0.85% Cu, 20 gpt Ag, 0.27 gpt Au, recovering 83% Cu, 79.2% Pb, 63.5% Zn to produce 19.83 M Lb Cu, 640 K Oz Ag, 6,794 Oz Au during the year. At Cusi, in Chihuahua, 61.4 K tonnes were processed at a rate of 702 tpd, at a grade of 210 gpt Ag, 0.14 gpt Au, 0.23% Pb, 0.23% Zn, recovering 79.8% Ag, 28.4% Au, 74% Pb, 0% Zn to produce 190 K Oz Ag, 78 Oz Au, 232 K Lb Pb during the quarter; and 285.2 K tonnes processed at a daily rate of 815 tpd at a grade of 129 gpt Ag, 0.15 gpt Au, 0.2% Pb, 0.2% Zn, recovering 79.1% Ag, 36.1% Au, 75.4% Pb, 0% Zn, to produce 936 K Oz Ag, 493 Oz Au, 904 K Lb Pb for the year.
  • First Majestic Silver Corp. announced 2020 production and cost guidance. San Dimas (Durango), La Encantada (Coahuila) and Santa Elena (Sonora) are the mines to continue in operation, while production has been halted at San Martin (Jalisco) and Del Toro (Zacatecas). The projected AISC is to be in the $13.37-$15.46 range per Oz Ag. At San Martin the mine is closed since mid-2019 due to security concerns, while at Del Toro, 22,450 m of exploration drilling are planned to develop new resources.First Majestic 2020 Guidance1

ON FINANCING

  • Silver Spruce Resources Inc. filed an amendment on the TSX Venture Exchange about the letter of agreement signed with ProDeMin, under which Silver Spruce is required to issue 1.7 M shares. Of those, 1.5 M shares are to be issued to ProDeMin and 200 K shares to the land owners of the Cocula project, in Jalisco (Pino de Plata, Chihuahua).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Minera Alamos Inc. informed that construction is ongoing at its Santana project in Sonora. The estimated construction time is six to eight months. During January and February is to start preparing the surfaces for leach pads and tailings dam, as well as roads on the mining area.
  • Argonaut Gold Inc. provided an update on its development projects. At San Antonio in Baja California Sur, Argonaut is looking at a probable non-monetary, book value decrement due to the uncertainty of obtaining the needed permits for development. The company is reviewing its options, like looking for zoning regulations changes, a revised environmental application and legal action options. At Cerro El Gallo, in Guanajuato, a “Documento Técnico Unificado” (several studies bundled together, needed to start development of the project) during the second quarter 2019. SEMARNAT asked for several minor changes and re-submittal, which is to be done during 2020 first quarter. SEMARNAT is to have 60 days to present its decision afterwards. Argonaut is also evaluating the possibility of producing fewer ounces in 2020, while improving the cash flow.
  • SilverCrest Metals Inc.released additional in-fill and expansion drill results from 71 holes on the Babi Sur vein at its Las Chispas project in Sonora. The current drilling has augmented the vein averages from 0.95 m (true width) @ 4.10 gpt Au, 268 gpt Ag (575 gpt AgEq) to 1.7 m tw @ 9.82 gpt Au, 382 gpt Ag (1,119 gpt AgEq). These results suggest a wider and higher grade vein than estimated in the previous resources, still open on strike and at depth. Currently there are 17 drill rigs working from the surface, and two from underground. The best drill holes returned true widths of 2.5 m @ 90.98 gpt Au, 108 gpt Ag (6,931 gpt AgEq); 7.8 m @ 10.53 gpt Au, 79 gpt Ag ((877 gpt Ag); 2.8 m @ 12.91 gpt Au, 1,141 gpt Ag (2,109 gpt AgEq).
  • Impact Silver Corp. announced results of a sampling program in the Veta Negra area on its Zacualpan property in Estado de Mexico. At Veta Negra two parallel veins averaging 14 m in width at an historic open pit, with a 650 m strike length. At the open pit about 50 m of vein strike were sampled, averaging 22.70 m @ 206 gpt Ag, 0.02 gpt Au, 0.14% Pb, 0.31% Zn on the El Socorro vein, and 16.02 m @ 208 gpt Ag, 0.13 gpt Au, 0.41% Pb, 0.56% Zn on the Veta Negra vein. A sub parallel vein 120 m from the Veta Negra returned up to 1.20 m @ 59 gpt Ag, 2.11 gpt Au, 0.19% Pb, 0.11% Zn; 1.30 m @ 286 gpt Ag, 1.07 gpt Au, 0.27% Pb, 0.05% Zn; 0.80 m @ 1,595 gpt Ag, 0.64 gpt Au, 0.19% Pb, 0.06% Zn; 0.80 m @ 309 gpt Ag, 1.53 gpt Au, 0.31% Pb, 0.06% Zn; 0.80 m @ 70 gpt Ag, 13.85 gpt Au, 0.21% Pb, 0.09% Zn; 1.90 m @ 215 gpt Ag, 1.04 gpt Au, 0.22% Pb, 0.08% Zn.
  • Mexus Gold US. began mining on the Julio vein/shear zone  via a 300 x 20 m open pit at its Santa Elena mine in Sonora (not to mistake with First Majestic’s Santa Elena mine, also in Sonora). Mined material was crushed and added to the heap leach facilities, with ore assaying 4 gpt Au, and as high as 16 gpt.
  • GoGold Resources Inc. released results from nine more drill holes at Los Ricos project in Jalisco. Highlighted hole length intervals comprise 16.8 m @ 0.36 gpt Au, 86 gpt Ag (1.51 gpt AuEq); 17.1 m @ 0.21 gpt Au, 60 gpt Ag (1.01 gpt AuEq), including 4.5 m @ 0.60 gpt Au, 104 gpt Ag (1.99 gpt AuEq); 18.9 m @ 2.01 gpt Au, 496.4 gpt Ag (8.63 gpt Au), including 5.0 m @ 7.30 gpt Au, 1,833 gpt Ag); 22.7 m @ 0.63 gpt Au, 65 gpt Ag (1.49 gpt AuEq), including 6.7 m @ 1.76 gpt Au, 114 gpt Ag (3.28 gpt AuEq); 12.9 m @ 0.57 gpt Au, 96 gpt Ag (1.86 gpt AuEq), including 6.5 m @ 1.08 gpt Au, 175 gpt Ag (3.41 gpt AuEq); 13.9 m @ 0.62 gpt Au, 80 gpt Ag (1.69 gpt AuEq), including 5.8 m @ 1.34 gpt Au, 141 gpt Ag (3.23 gpt AuEq).
  • Mexican Gold Corp. released drilling results on its Las Minas project, Veracruz. The 13 holes targeted a TEM anomaly, infill at El Dorado, Cinco Señores and Pueblo Nuevo zones. One hole at the TEM anomaly intersected endo skarn and is a good guide to further drilling; Two holes on El Dorado infill intersected higher grade mineralization than expected, a third one did not reach the sought contact zone; The two holes at Cinco Señores did not intersect the contact; At Pueblo Nuevo, drilling intersected several gold bearing veins, without the high gold and base metal values sampled at surface. Highlighted results comprise: 19.5 m tw @ 0.95 gpt Au,4 gpt Ag, 1.30% Cu; 6.0 m tw @ 1.36 gpt Au, 5 gpt Ag, 1.08% Cu; 5.2 m @ 8.94 gpt Au (including 2.0 m @ 21.37 gpt Au); 0.7 m @ 3.23 gpt Au; 0.9 m @ 2.69 gpt Au; 0.95 m @ 2.71 gpt Au.
  • Prime Mining Corp. announced surface results from trenches and road cuts from its Los Reyes project in Sinaloa. These samples show gold grades over significant widths in an area outside the historical resource at El Zapote North and South. Road cut sampling returned 24.5 m @ 7.94 gpt Au, 59 gpt Ag; 13.5 m @ 12.17 gpt Au, 71 gpt Ag; 27.0 m @ 1.53 gpt Au, 25 gpt Ag; 37.5 m @ 0.76 gpt Au, 18 gpt Ag. Surface trenching at Zapote Central returned 30.0 m @ 3.93 gpt Au, 40 gpt Ag; 7.5 m @ 8.71 gpt Au, 60 gpt Ag; 10.5 m @ 0.88 gpt Au, 62 gpt Ag; 25.5 m @ 0.33 gpt Au, 15 gpt Ag.
  • GR Silver Mining Ltd. (Goldplay Exploration Ltd.) updated on its exploration results for 2019 at its San Marcial project in Sinaloa. Late 2019 drill holes returned up to 28.7 m @ 92 gpt Ag, including 13.75 m @ 154 gpt Ag and 0.6 m @ 138 gpt Ag, 0.56 gpt Au. High-grade depth extensions are to be sought by underground drilling below the current resource. XRF litho-geochemistry for target generation has re-commenced and due diligence work started on the potential acquisition of the Plomosas and La Trinidad projects.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Santacruz Mining Ltd. acquired by staking the La Pechuga property in Hidalgo. The mining concession (application??) covers 3,025 ha 25 km SE from the Zimapan mine. Several historic mines are developed in 3-8 m wide carbonate replacement or skarn mineralization hosted on El Doctor Formation limestone. Previous sampling by the SGM (Servicio Geológico Mexicano) reported up to 770 gpt Ag, 0.50 gpt Au, 21.9% Pb, 13.4% Zn, 0.47% Cu.
  • Leagold Mining Corp. announced a recommendation by advisory firms for a favorable vote on a proposed merger with Equinox Gold Corp., on the special meeting to be held on January 28, 2019 (Leagold: Los Filos, Guerrero. Equinox: Mesquite, California, USA).

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • The Mining Fund allocated the resources needed for the rehabilitation of the sports field in Santa Barbara, Chihuahua. The facilities were inaugurated by Antonio Bilbao, president of the Municipality, where 336 square meters were rehabilitated, with lighting and other improvements performed, counting on a total investment of $796,381 pesos. Approximately 500 inhabitants benefit with the resources provided by the Mining Fund..
  • Esperanza Silver (Alamos Gold) is to start operations at its Esperanza project in Tetlama, Morelos, by the end of 2020 or early 2021. The company has initiated to inform the communities on the permits obtained and the remaining, in the high margination zone. The project is proposed as “Nuevo Modelo de Minería Social y Ambientalmente Responsable” (A New Model on Socially and Environmentally Responsible Mining), promoting community development, with the respect to human rights and social and environmental issues standing prominently in the company model. By this approach the project would stick by the rules set by the UNO 2030 schedule, with plans for Social Management, Cultural Management and Economic Management. To eradicate poverty, mining can pay taxes and royalties, develop local supply lines, strengthen local value chains, promote inclusive employment, preserve land access, conservation and recycling of water, water management, improve energy efficiency, incorporate renewable energy and keep the public aware of opportunities and limitations.
  • Minera San Xavier formalized the delivery of the company’s silver jewelry shop, “La Victoria”. The shop is located on the historic down town of Cerro San Pedro, in San Luis Potosí, with the sale were included the machinery, tools and silver inventory. The shop was offered to employees and workers of Minera San Xavier through an open bid, of which Mónica Daniela Fierros obtaining the shop by presenting a plan with continuing local team, sustainability, innovation, creativity, quality and leadership.
  • Guerrero’s Governor, Héctor Astudillo, signed an agreement with Minera Media Luna and the Cocula Municipalty, to pave 5 km of road between Real del Limón-La Fundición, benefiting more than 1,200 inhabitants. Each of the agreement signers is to deliver $5 M pesos for the construction work.

Content like what you have just read can be seen at https://gambusinoprospector.com/ and at LinkedIn’s Mexico Mineral Exploration Group.

On the image below: Underground picture of a quartz vein in an orogenic gold system of Oaxaca, by Jorge Cirett.

204

The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the Third Week of January, 2020.

 

Boiling texture in an epithermal quartz vein

By Miguel A Heredia

During the third week of the year (January 13th to January 19th, 2020), at least 27 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico, with eight communicating production results, seven reporting on resources and developments, five informing on exploration results, two disclosing deals and corporate issues, two discussing issues on social responsibility, two commenting on Mexican issues, and one announcing financial rounds.  ON MEXICO ISSUES, The Mexican mining industry, the thirteenth largest in the world, is laying the groundwork for generating more investment in this important development engine. Mining  activity has increased in Tamaulipas, according to the General Directorate of Mines.  ON EXPLORATION, In Sonora, Silver Viper released drilling results from its La Virginia project and Aztec Minerals provided a 2020 outlook for its Cervantes project. In Chihuahua, Radius announced results from the third phase of drilling from its Amalia project. In Sinaloa, Vizsla Resources discovered a new high grade vein at its Panuco project. In Zacatecas, Advance Gold commenced the third phase geophysical survey at its Tabasquena project. ON MINING, Alamos Gold commenced operation at its Cerro Pelon mine in Sonora. Torex announced that it expects to produce between 420K to 480K Oz Au in 2020 (El Limón Guajes, Guerrero). Great Panther, GoGold, McEwen, Fortuna Silver, Avino, and Coeur reported Q4 and full year 2019 production and financial results from their Mexican operations.   ON FINANCING, Minera Alamos closed a private placement with Osisko for gross proceeds of $6M. (Santana project, Sonora). ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Starcore staked two new claims near its San Martin Mine in Querétaro. Prime Mining retained a consulting company to complete an estimate of the Au and Ag resources for its Los Reyes mine in Sinaloa. Capstone presented expansion and infill drilling results from its Cozamine mine in Zacatecas. Torex announced an updated resource estimate for its Media Luna project in Guerrero.  SilverCrest announced it plans to release in-fill and expansion drill results from six areas in Q1, 2020. Minera Alamos commenced construction of its Santana mine in Sonora. Southern Silver reported that metallurgical test work confirmed that a marketable Cu, Pb, Zn concentrate can be produce at its Cerro Las Minitas project in Durango. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Sonoro Metals granted stock options to certain directors, officers, and consultants (Cerro Caliche project, Sonora). Radius signed a binding option agreement to acquire from a private family an 800 Ha property called Palmillas, which is adjacent to its Amalia project in Chihuahua. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY, The Mining Fund contributed in the road construction in the municipality of Tepehuanes, Durango. The Peñoles Community Center will give new human development workshop.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • The Mexican mining industry, the thirteenth largest in the world, is laying the groundwork for generating more investment in this important development engine. The Ministry of Economy works to have a financing model like the Canadian one. One of the government’s bets is that Mexico, with private investment, be a producer of rechargeable Li batteries for electric cars. José Francisco Quiroga Fernández, the Under Secretariat of Mining said in an interview, that USD $ 100B will be the value of annual Li sales in 2029, according to Bloomberg. 243M tonnes of Li are estimated to be in the Sonora deposits. At the moment that market is worth just over USD $22B; However, according to Bloomberg NEF estimates in 2023 it exceeds USD $40B, in 2025 it will be USD $60B and in 2030, USD $116B, that is to say almost 420% more than the global sales of 2019.
  • Mining activity has increased in Tamaulipas, according to the General Directorate of Mines. The state has 124 mining concessions in 19 of their municipalities. Profits produced by the mineral extraction of Pb, Zn, Cu, Au, Ag, serpentine, and stone aggregates exceed MXP $2,000M per year.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Silver Viper Minerals Corp., announced drilling results for the first three holes of the phase 2 from its Virginia project in Sonora. Significant results were encountered in hole LV19-209 with 3.22 g/t Au and 1,054 g/t Ag (1,280 g/t AgEq) over 1.8m, and other interval with 2.50 g/t Au and 27 g/t Ag (202 g/t AgEq) over 7m, including 5.27 g/t Au and 41 g/t Ag (410 g/t AgEq) over 3m; hole LV19-210 with 1.47 g/t Au and 216 g/t Ag (319 g/t AgEq) over 6m, including 6.32 g/t Au and 1,071 g/t Ag (1,513 g/t AgEq)over 1m; and hole LV19-211 with 13.39 g/t Au and 446 g/t Ag (1,384 g/t AgEq) over 4.5m, including 58.3 g/t Au and 1,923 g/t Ag (6,004 g(t AgEq) over 1m, and other interval with 1.37 g/t Au and 40 g/t Ag (136 g/t AgEq) over 9m. Phase II will consists of 5,000m in approximately 20 holes.
  • Aztec Minerals Corp., provided a 2020 outlook for its Cervantes project in Sonora. It plans to finalize the JV agreement with Kootenay in January 2020, and secure a senior partner to conduct an aggressive exploration program to advance both near surface oxide Au mineralization and deeper porphyry Au-Cu targets.
  • Radius Gold Inc., announced results from the recently completed third phase of drilling from its Amalia project in Chihuahua. Significant results were encountered in hole AM-DD19-18 with 12.5 g/t Au and 2,320 g/t Ag over 1.3m, and 1.4 g/t Au over 13.7m; and hole AM-DD19-19 with 0.5 g/t Au and 22 g/t Ag over 7.4m. Holes AM-DD19-20 and 21 only encountered anomalous Au-Ag values at the San Pedro fault. Radius reported that it has signed a binding agreement to acquire the 800 Ha Palmillas property from a private family which hosts high-grade epithermal Au-Ag mineralization and is adjacent to Amalia project.
  • Vizsla Resources Corp., discovered a new high grade vein at its Panuco property in Sinaloa. This vein consists of crystalline quartz with disseminated argentite and pyrite hosted in a strongly weathered and demagnetized diorite. Sampling on this 500m long vein returned 3.07g/t Au and 312 g/t Ag (557 g/t AgEq over 3.4m; 1.34 g/t Au and 263 g/t Ag (370 g/t AgEq) over 0.7m; and 0.5 g/t Au and 107 g/t Ag (147 g/t AgEq) over 1.1m. Vizsla plans to drill this recently discovered vein in late January/early February as one of the twenty targets that will be drilled throughout 2020.
  • Advance Gold Corp., commenced the third phase geophysical survey at its Tabasquena project in Zacatecas to delineate a new chargeability anomaly identified on the most southerly of the reconnaissance lines from the second phase survey, and to do a long NW-SE line cross cutting all of the previous E-W survey lines to obtain a much deeper penetration. This new survey will consist of nine E-W lines of 1,000m long, with line spacing of 120m, and one line NW-SE of 4,000m long.

ON MINING

  • Alamos Gold Inc., commenced operation at its satellite mine Cerro Pelon, located 3km from its Mulatos mining unit in Sonora. The new open pit mine, whose current life is three years, has a capacity of 4,500 tons per day, has an independent crushing train and the material is deposited in the Mulatos mine yards, taking advantage of the existing mining infrastructure and avoiding more capital costs.
  • Torex Gold Resources Inc., announced that it expects to produce between 420K to 480K Oz Au in 2020, at a total cost per Oz Au sold of USD $640-$670, and AISC of USD $900-$960 per Oz Au sold.
  • Great Panther Mining Limited, reported Q4 and full year 2019 production and financial results from their Mexican operations. At Topia mine, Durango, the company processed in Q4, 2019, 18,854 tonnes with grades of 0.81 g/t Au and 424 g/t Ag for a total of 267 Oz Au, 242.8K Oz Ag, 1.09M Lb Pb, and 1.45M Lb Zn (449.6K Oz AgEq), that brings a total of 79,257 tonnes processed in the full year 2019, with grades of 0.94 g/t Au and 392 g/t Ag for a total of 1,344 Oz Au, 938.6K Oz Ag, 4.39M Lb Pb, and 5.77M Lb Zn (1.78M Oz AgEq). At Guanajuato mine complex, the company processed in Q4, 2019 a total of 48,710 tonnes with grades of 2 g/t Au and 136 g/t Ag for a total of 2,640 Oz Au and 180.5K Oz Ag (394.6K Oz AgEq), that brings a total of 187,610 tonnes processed in the full year 2019 with grades of 2.26 g/t Au and 116 g/t Ag for a total of 11,588 Oz Au and 590.8K Oz Ag (1.5M Oz AgEq).
  • GoGold Resources Inc., announced Q4, 2019 production results from its Parral Tailings project in Chihuahua. The company produced 2,407 Oz Au and 379K Oz Ag (585K Oz AgEq).
  • McEwen Mining Inc., reported that its El Gallo mine in Sinaloa produced in 2019 a total of 16,333Oz AuEq from residual leaching of the heap leach pad.
  • Fortuna Silver Mines Inc., announced Q4 and full year 2019 production results from its San Jose mine in Oaxaca. It processed 273,066 tonnes of 1.5 g/t Au and 249 g/t Ag to produce a total of 12K Oz Au and 2M Oz Ag. In the full year 2019, the company processed 1,068,722 tonnes of 1.57 g/t Au and 252 g/t Ag to produce 48.9K Oz Au and 7.9M Oz Ag.
  • Avino Silver & Gold Mines Ltd., reported Q4, and full year 2019 production results from its Avino mine in Durango, including Avino, San Gonzalo and stockpiles. During the Q4 period, it processed 188,436 tonnes of 0.47 g/t Au, 51 g/t Ag, and 0.43% Cu to produce 2,032 Oz Au, 220.8K Oz Ag, and 1.39M Lb Cu (608.6K Oz AgEq). In the full year 2019, the company processed 789,660 tonnes of 0.41 g/t Au, 54 g/t Ag, and 0.4%Cu to produce 6,912 Oz Au, 958.8 Oz Ag, and 4.97M Lb Cu (2.4M Oz AgEq).
  • Coeur Mining Inc., announced Q4 and full year 2019 production and financial results from its Palmarejo mine in Chihuahua. In the period Q4, it milled 486,779 tonnes of 2.25 g/t Au and 159 g/ Ag for a total of 28.7K Oz Au and 2M Oz Ag at an average realized price per Oz Au and Ag of $1,238 and $17.28 respectively. For the full year 2019, the company milled 1,755,957 tonnes of 2.49 g/t Au and 151 g/t Ag to produce a total of 111.9K Oz Au and 6.76M Oz Ag at an average realized price per Oz Au and Ag of $1,220 and $16.23 respectively.

ON FINANCING

  • Minera Alamos Inc., closed a private placement with Osisko Gold Royalties Ltd., for gross proceeds of $6M. With this, Osisko has increased its shareholding of the company´s common share from 12.3% to 18.7%. Net proceeds will be used for building its Santana mine in Sonora.

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  •  Starcore International Mines Ltd., staked two new claims near its San Martin Mine in Queretaro with upside potential for exploration and development. These two new claims are located to the west of the current mineral rights of the mine and cover approximately 710 Ha. The company will release an exploration plan for the first part of 2020.
  • Prime Mining Corp., retained a consulting company to complete a 43-101 compliant technical report that includes a n estimate of the Au and Ag resources for its Los Reyes mine in Sinaloa. Prime geologists have prepared a database of 493 historic drill holes to establish a new 43-101 compliant in-pit resource. The company expects to expands the size of the indicated resource presented by the former owner of 380.1K Oz Au at a grade of 1.73 g/t Au and inferred resources of 155.2K Oz Au at a grade of 1.49 g/t Au, and Ag resources of 6.3M indicated Oz Ag at a grade of 29 g/t Ag, and 3.6M inferred Oz Ag at a grade of 35 g/t Ag.
  • Capstone Mining Corp., presented drilling results from 6 expansion holes and 21 infill holes collared at its Cozamin mine in Zacatecas. This brings the total drilled to date to 150 holes of a 200 hole program, aiming to double the current reserve base. Significant drill intercepts were encountered in hole CG-19-S445 (step out) with 5.31% Cu, 0.15% Zn, and 79 g(t Ag over a true width of 6.3m, including 9.8% Cu, 0.26% Zn, and 139 g/t Ag over 2.8m; hole CG-19-S443 (step out) with 4.95% Cu, 0.15% Zn, and 104 g/t Ag; hole CG-19-S436 with 6.13% Cu, 0.24% Zn, and 98 g/t Ag over a true width of 1.7m; hole CG-19-S441(step out) with 3.35% Cu, 0.34% Zn, and 62 g/t Ag over a true width of 5.4m; hole CG-10-S455 (infill) with 7.65% Cu, 0.35%Zn, and 141 g/t Ag over a true width of 5.4m; hole CG-19-S437 (infill) with 1.94% Cu, 0.15% Zn and 45 g/t Ag over a true width of 19.3m, including 5.9% Cu, 0.33% Zn, and 134 g/t Ag over a true width of 2.80m; hole CG-19-S440 (infill) with 8.29% Cu, 0.25%Zn, and 133 g/t Ag over a true width of 4.9m, including 10.75% Cu, 0.32% Zn, and 166 g/t Ag over a true width of 3.4M; and hole CG-19-S444 (infill) with 3.31% Cu, 0.11% Zn, and 82 g/t Ag over a true width of 11.8m, including 7.89% Cu, 0.2%Zn, and 198 g/t Ag over a true width of 3.7m.
  • Torex Gold Resources Inc., announced an updated resource estimate for its Media Luna project in Guerrero. It reported an indicated resource of 12.6M tonnes of 3.27 g/t Au, 38 g/t Ag, and 1.16% Cu for a total of 1.32 M Oz Au, 15.3M Ag, and 322M Lb Cu (2.24M Oz Au Eq at a grade of 5.5 g/t AuEq). Inferred resources are 33.5M tonnes of 2.49 g/t Au, 24 g/t Ag, and 0.93% Cu for a total of 2.68M Oz Au, 25.5M Oz Ag, and 686M Lb Cu (4.56M Oz AuEq at a grade of 4.23 g/t AuEq).
  • SilverCrest Metals Inc., announced it plans to release in Q1, 2020 in-fill and expansion drill results from Babi Sur, Babi Vista Discover, Babicanora Norte, Babicanora, Babicanora FW, and Area 118 Discovery veins. Drill results will be incorporated into the updated resource to be released in the FS in H1, 2020. SilverCrest plans to conduct a 125,000m of exploration drill program focused on expanding measured and indicated resources to be considered for inclusion in the initial reserve estimate with the FS. In anticipation of a positive construction decision based on the FS, and the approval from the government of the change of use of soil permit, the company will commence to construct offices, warehousing, water works, and roads access improvements in H1.
  • Minera Alamos Inc., commenced the construction of its Santana mine in Sonora. It plans to provide construction updates during the 6-8 months construction period. During January and February, the company along with members of the community will begin to prepare the areas designed for the leach pads and holding pods, as well as initiate road construction within the planned mine area.
  • Southern Silver Exploration Corp., announced that the metallurgical tests work at its Cerro Las Minitas project in Durango confirmed that a marketable Cu, Pb, and Zn concentrate can be produce, increasing its value compared with earlier batch testing. These results are highlighted by a 94.7% Zn recovery grading 54.0% Zn in the Zn concentrate and grades of 5,504g/t Ag and 65.1% Pb in the Pb concentrate. Ag strongly partitions into the Pb and Cu concentrates for a combined 83.8% Ag recovery into concentrates that traditionally receive favourable payable terms.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Sonoro Metals Corp., granted stock options to certain directors, officers and consultants of the company to purchase an aggregate of 3,040,000 common shares.
  • Radius Gold Inc., reported that it has signed a binding agreement to acquire the 800 Ha Palmillas property from a private family which hosts high-grade epithermal Au-Ag mineralization and is adjacent to Amalia project in Chihuahua. During due diligence evaluation, Radius sampled outcrops and old adits obtaining encouraging results, such as 9.5 g/t Au and 73 g/t Ag over 4m, and 1.54 g/t Au and 58 g/t Ag over 10.5m. The company can earn a 100% interest in the Palmillas property by making staged payments over a period of five years for a total USD $350K, of which USD $200K is a final payment at the end of five years.

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • With an investment of MXP $9M, and a direct benefit for 1,200 residents of the area, Governor of Durango, José Rosas Aispuro Torres, delivered road infrastructure works, in compliance with one more commitment to the inhabitants of Tepehuanes. The state executive said that this is a work that was carried out thanks to the resource of the Mining Fund, which made it possible to build eight thousand square meters of pavement with hydraulic concrete, directly benefiting the inhabitants of four colonies of the Municipal head.
  • The Peñoles Community Center, will give a new human development workshop. It also announced that another of the Peñoles Community Center workshops with the highest demand is that of teaching English, which students attend to receive instruction three days a week in both morning and evening hours.

Content like what you have just read can be seen at https://gambusinoprospector.com/ and at LinkedIn’s Mexico Mineral Exploration Group.

On the picture above, an epithermal quartz vein displaying boiling textures in a prospect in Zacatecas, Mexico.  Photo by Miguel A Heredia.