Consolidated Zinc Limited (ASX: CZL, “Consolidated Zinc” or “Company”) wishes to advise that the closing date for its Share Purchase Plan (“SPP”) has been extended to 5:00pm (AEST) on Monday 22 October 2018 from the previous closing date of 15 October 2018.
PREMIER GOLD MINES LIMITED (“Premier” or “The Company”) (TSX:PG) is pleased to announce its second quarter (Q2) production results, including an increase in annual production guidance, and a continued solid and safe track record from the Company’s mining operations.
TORONTO, ONTARIO – April 5, 2018 – Americas Silver Corporation (TSX: USA) (NYSE “American”: USAS) (“Americas Silver” or the “Company”) is pleased to provide an update on exploration activities at its two operating properties, the 100%-owned Cosalá Operations in Sinaloa, Mexico and the 100%-owned Galena Complex in Wallace, Idaho. The Cosalá Operations includes the Zone 120 deposit, adjacent to the San Rafael Mine.
On the picture above, take geologists to a mining museum, and this is what you get. Geologists Ruben Padilla, Barry Quiroz and Miguel Heredia at El Oro Museum in Estado de Mexico. Photo by Jorge Cirett.
By Jorge Cirett
During the 12th week of the year (March 19th to March 25th, 2018), at least 16 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. ON MEXICO ISSUES, a gold nugget weighing 850 grams was found in northern Sonora. ON EXPLORATION, In Sonora, Colibri has begun drilling at El Pilar project; while Azure updated work on its Oposura project releasing new high grade drill results. Kootenay has drilled six of seven holes on one target of its La Cigarra project, other targets to follow. ON MINING, three companies, Primero Mining, Excellon and Sierra Metals presented financial and or production results for the fourth quarter and/or full year 2017. Santacruz Silver completed expansion of milling capacity at Veta Grande in Zacatecas. ON FINANCING, Evrim received $3 M from the exercise of warrants. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Americas Silver presented an updated resource on its San Felipe property in Sonora. Almaden provided an update on work being done on the feasibility study at the Ixtaca project in Puebla. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Alio Gold is to acquire all shares outstanding of Rye Patch, a company with several properties in USA. Bacanora Minerals extended the timetable for re-domiciling by a few days. Sonoro executed an option agreement on a group of properties adjoining its Cerro Caliche property in Sonora.
ON MEXICO ISSUES
- A gold nugget weighing 850 grams was found in La Cienega area, south of Pitiquito in Sonora. The nugget was discovered using a metal detector by a local gambusino. Northwest Sonora is known by the presence of orogenic gold style deposits, like La Herradura, Nochebuena, La Choya, San Francisco and El Chanate. This type of ore deposits has produced large gold nuggets, of up to 12 kg in weight, with the most famous specimens coming from the El Boludo, La Cienega and Tajitos gold placers.
- Colibri Resource Corp. has begun phase 1 of its 2018 drilling program on its Pilar property in Sonora. The program envisages up to 30 holes to be drilled focusing on modelling and extending the known mineralization of the Main Zone to the northwest and southwest along trend. “To date, Colibri has defined an in-house resource of 700 K tonnes @ 1.9 g/t Au”.
- Kootenay Silver Inc. informed on advances on the current drill program at its La Cigarra property in Chihuahua. Six holes have been completed, and one more is in progress at La Borracha zone, which is the extension of the structure that hosts La Cigarra resource, and drilling has now tested 1,000 m of strike length beyond the resource. Results will be disclosed once all assays have been received. The next drill target is the newly identified Nogalera gold zone, with 8 holes planned on anomalous mineralization over more than 1,000 m of length. Once Nogalera has been drilled, the 104-Vein on the southern part of La Cigarra resource is to be drill tested.
- Azure Minerals Ltd. updated on work being done at its Oposura project in Sonora. Drilling along strike of an outcrop carrying up to 59.6% Pb+Zn on the West Zone intersected high grade mineralization over an area of 400 x 400 m. Some of the best combined Pb + Zn intercepts returned 2.4 m @ 15.5%. 7.4 m @ 15.9%, 2.8 m @ 19.0%, 3.7 m @ 15.6%, 3.5 m @ 13.2%, 4.6 m @ 15.0%. To date drilling in the West Zone has comprised 64 holes for 4,936 m, with assay results received for 26 drill holes.
- Primero Mining Corp. reported financial and operating results for 4Q and full year 2017. Primero commenced a strategic review process that resulted in the sale of the Cerro del Gallo project (Guanajuato) in November 2017, and the entering into an arrangement agreement whereby First Majestic will acquire all issued and outstanding common shares of Primero. At San Dimas in Durango, 21,076 Oz Au and 1.32 M Oz Ag were produced during the fourth quarter. For full year 2017, San Dimas produced 111,376 Oz Au, 3.96 M Oz Ag. A strike at San Dimas in early 2017 stopped work for more than two months, significantly impacting yearly production levels.
- Excellon Resources Inc. reported financial results for the fourth quarter and full year 2017. During the fourth quarter the Platosa mine in Durango produced 16.1 K tonnes, processing 18 K tonnes @ 424 g/t Ag, 3.8% Pb, 5.8% Zn, with recoveries of 90.3% Ag, 80.0% Pb, 82.2% Zn, to produce 206.4 K Oz Ag, 1.17 M Lb Pb, 1.67 M Lb Zn. For the year 57.2 K tonnes were produced, while milling 55.6 K tonnes @ 456 g/t Ag, 4.4% Pb, 5.7% Zn, with recoveries of 90.5% Ag, 82.1% Pb, 80.1% Zn, producing 668 K Oz Ag, 4.09 M Lb Pb, 4.60 M Lb Zn. During 2017 the optimization plan was completed at the Platosa mine, resulting in dry mining conditions that increased production and lowered the costs. Total cash cost per Ag Oz decreased to $10.38, with an AISC of $21.89. All in sustaining cost was $15.84 per Ag Oz for the fourth quarter and $21.89 per Ag Oz for the year.
- Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd. informed that expansion of milling capacity at its Veta Grande project to 750 tpd (tonnes per day) has been completed. The mill is currently operating at 450 tpd, and full capacity operations are expected to be achieved early in the second quarter 2018. Santacruz now will focus in the consolidation of underground operations.
- Sierra Metals Inc. reported fourth quarter and year end 2017 financial results, without separating figures for its operations in Mexico. Production at Bolivar is expected to reach 3,000 tpd in Q1 2018 and 3,500 tpd in the second half of 2018. An update in resources is expected in the coming months. At Cusi production is being ramped up to the 650 tpd Mal Paso mill capacity by Q2 2018. The installation of another mill is expected to take production to 1,200 tpd by 2019. At the end of the period the company had 23.9 M in cash and cash equivalents.
- Evrim Resources Corp. received $3.06 M from the exercise of common share purchase warrants, representing 98% of the warrants issue dated December 16, 2015. As a result, Evrim’s current cash position approximates $5.5 M (Cerro Cascaron, Chihuahua).
ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT
- Americas Silver Corp. provided an update on the mineral resource estimate at the San Felipe project in Sonora (optioned from Hochschild in early 2017). Of 342 holed drilled by four companies since 1998, 294 are within La Ventana, San Felipe, Transversales and Las Lamas deposits which host the current resource. The new resource contains 4,685 K tonnes @ 5.4% Zn, 2.5% Pb, 61 g/t Ag in the indicated category and 2,008 K tonnes @ 3.6% Zn, 1.4% Pb, 48 g/t Ag in the inferred category. These resources host 560 M Lb Zn, 256 M Lb Pb, 9.1 M Oz Ag; 158 M Lb Zn, 63 M Lb Pb, 3.1 M Oz Ag respectively.
- Almaden Minerals Ltd. updated on work related to the feasibility study (FS) at the Ixtaca project in Puebla. Work underway includes a resource model update, metallurgy testwork, engineering design, optimization studies, work to move the Rock Creek processing plant to Ixtaca, construction planning, geotechnical site investigation and water management studies. Almaden is also preparing an environmental impact assessment study (Manifiesto de Impacto Ambiental, or MIA) for Ixtaca.
ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES
- Alio Gold Inc. and Rye Patch Corp. entered on an arrangement under which Alio Gold (San Francisco, Sonora; Ana Paula, Guerrero) is to acquire all the outstanding shares of Rye Patch (Florida Canyon, Nevada; Lincoln Hill, Nevada). The offer values Rye Patch outstanding equity at C$128 M. The transaction is expected to close on or about May 25, 2018.
- Bacanora Minerals Ltd. announced that the proposed timetable for the proposed Re-domicile has been changed to 26 March 2018.
- Sonoro Metals Corp. executed a formal option agreement with a Tucson, Arizona resident to acquire a 100% interest in the 403.5 ha Rosario group of concessions, adjacent to its Cerro Caliche property in Sonora, thus increasing the land holdings of the project to 1,455 ha. The option agreement entails a total consideration to the vendor of US$1.6 M, payable in escalating cash installments over 72 months, and a 2% NSR which can be bought for US$1 M for each percentage point. The initial US$60 K was paid on execution. Total drilling in the two properties before 2008 is 10,118 m in 101 holes.
Content like what you have just read can be seen at https://gambusinoprospector.com/ and at LinkedIn’s Mexico Mineral Exploration Group.
By Jorge Cirett
During the 10th week of the year (March 5th to March 11th, 2018), at least 24 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico, and three articles on mining matters in Mexico published by newspapers. ON MEXICO ISSUES, the Fraser Institute released the results of the 2017 survey on Mining Attractiveness by Jurisdiction, with Mexico stagnant at mid table due to low results on taxation regime, labor disruptions and security perception. The Sonora government is supporting the mining industry with the signature of a collaboration agreement with the Economy Bureau. The governors of Chihuahua and Oaxaca attended the PDAC in Toronto for promoting mining investment in their respective states. Other delegations present were from Durango and Zacatecas. ON EXPLORATION, In Sonora Riverside announced a bigger land position at its Cecilia project; Oceanus has mapped the favorable El Tigre Formation rock package for 5 km in strike length at its El Tigre property; Mexus Gold updated on exploration of its 8 Hermanos property; Millrock disclosed interesting low grade drilling results from its Navidad property; Azure has started the second drill campaign at its Sara Alicia Au-Co property. In Chihuahua VVC Minerals received the permit for drilling its Samalayuca property; Radius updated on exploration at its Amalia project. In Guanajuato, Vangold started the phase two of drilling at its Pinguico property. ON MINING, two companies, Americas Silver and Santacruz Silver presented production results for the quarter and/or full year 2017. Magellan Gold announced the restart of its mill in Nayarit. ON FINANCING, Canuc Resources closed a $1.1 M financing round, Colibri closed the first tranche of a financing round netting $1.08 M. Vangold announced the opening of a financing round for raising up to $2 M. Santacruz Silver obtained a US$2.3 M private loan. Starcore closed a financing round for $125 K with an insider. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Levon Resources released an updated mineral resource report for its Cordero project in Chihuahua. Alio Gold provided an exploration update at its Ana Paula project in Guerrero. Leagold updated its mineral resource estimate for its Los Filos mine and the Bermejal Underground deposits in Guerrero. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Sonoro Metals acted on the LOI to option a group of properties adjacent to its Cerro Caliche property in Sonora. Autlan is to acquire all shares from Metallorum (it already controls an undisclosed percentage), which owns the Lluvia de Oro mine in Sonora.
ON MEXICO ISSUES
- Mexico stays about the same on the investment attractiveness index published yearly by the Fraser Institute. Mexico fell to the 50 (of 91 jurisdictions surveyed) position from the 44 (of 104) on the 2016 survey, affected mainly by low rankings in security, taxation regime and labor regulations/work disruptions. In 2014 Mexico was on the 24 position of 122 surveyed. Chile ranked 8 and Peru 19 on the 2017 survey. Below is the table for the perception of the taxation regime (which presents the effect of the recently imposed royalties as a hard fact). The security perception ranking, along the other rankings can be seen at the following link: (https://www.fraserinstitute.org/sites/default/files/survey-of-mining-companies-2017.pdf).
- The Sonora government is supporting the development of the mining industry in the state with the signature of a collaboration agreement with the Economy Bureau (Secretaría de Economía). The agreement looks to promote investment, better technical assessments, training and cut red tape. The mining industry represents 17% of the state’s GDP, with the state providing 31% of Mexico’s mining production. Sonora’s Governor Claudia Pavlovich has been pushing a proposal on the Deputies Chamber to install a 100% deduction of exploration expenses on the year these are incurred.
- The governors of Chihuahua and Oaxaca attended the PDAC in Toronto Canada to promote mining investment on their states. Both Javier Corral (Chihuahua) and Alejandro Murat (Oaxaca) attended the Mexico Mining Day 2018 and had personal interviews with companies doing business in their states or trying to set a foothold there. Other delegations present were from Durango and Zacatecas.
- VVC Minerals Corp. received the permit for drilling at its Samalayuca property in Chihuahua. The SEMARNAT permit approved 22 new drilling sites, in addition to 13 already approved. The drilling is to focus on La Gloria Extension area, La Concha pit area, La Zorra zone and the Julianna, Suerte and Trinidad areas. The completed and proposed drilling cover 7 Km of strike length on the property.
- Vangold Mining Corp. concludes phase 1 drilling, starts phase 2 drilling at El Pinguico property in Guanajuato. Vangold completed five of 15 drill holes targeting the underground stockpiles (backfill) on the El Pinguico vein, with poor recoveries and grades. While a better method of assessing these stockpiles is researched, the company has initiated the phase 2 drilling campaign targeting the lower El Pinguico vein extension below the old workings, 300 m below the surface.
- Riverside Resources Inc. announced that it has been granted the mineral rights to the Cecilia 1 concession, increasing the ground held on the Cecilia project in Sonora to almost 6,000 hectares. Epithermal Au-Ag mineralization is associated to a rhyolite flow-dome setting.
- Oceanus Resources Corp. updated on its exploration efforts on El Tigre property in Sonora. The El Tigre Formation is the rock package that host the historic El Tigre mine, which operated from 1903 to 1938, producing 353 K Oz Au and 67.4 M Oz Ag; the favorable El Tigre Formation has been now traced for 5 km.
- Mexus Gold US. presented an update on exploration of its 8 Hermanos and Scorpio_370 claims in Sonora. Mexus controls 2,800 hectares in an area with sedimentary rocks intruded by granodiorite, dioritic dikes and a diorite porphyry, all covered in turn by Tertiary volcanic tuffs and flows. Three samples from the 370 concession returned 9 g/t Au, 41 g/t Ag; 47 g/t Au, 33 g/t Ag; 10 g/t Au, 8 g/t Ag. Porphyry copper potential is highlighted on a report (no alteration is described).
- Radius Gold Inc. provided an update on exploration at the Amalia project in Chihuahua. The 10,380 ha project has Au-Ag mineralization defined over 2 km of strike length in high level chalcedonic veins, stockworks and breccias and deeper level structurally controlled higher grade mineralization. “Radius continues to advance the Amalia project and is currently permitting drilling and bulldozer trenching.” Recent channel sampling returned 4.5 m @ 10.3 g/t Au, 202 g/t Ag, extending the total strike length of the high-level epithermal mineralization of the Campamento zone to 500 m.
- Millrock Resources Inc. reported on first phase core drilling at its La Navidad project in Sonora, funded by earn-in partner Centerra Gold. In total, 2,130 m were drilled in 12 holes, with several anomalous intersections, like: 17.2 m @ 0.75 g/t Au (including 1 m @ 9.05 g/t Au); 15.65 m @ 0.60 g/t Au; 18.30 m @ 0.33 g/t Au; 18.0 m @ 0.12 g/t Au; 6.00 m @ 0.26 g/t Au; 5.90 m @ 0.45 g/t Au; 57.0 m @ 0.29 g/t Au; 16.6 m @ 0.35 g/t Au.
- Azure Minerals Ltd. announced the start of the second drilling campaign on its Sara Alicia project in Sonora. “The Sara Alicia mineralised zone consists of carbonate rocks intruded by a porphyry. This intrusive event caused strong alteration and mineralising reactions in the limestones to form a skarn body which hosts massive and semi-massive sulphides containing the cobalt and gold mineralisation”. The first phase of this drilling campaign is to comprise 1,000 m in 10-12 holes, targeting along-strike and down-dip extensions. The second phase is planned to complete a 50 x 50 m drill pattern over the mineralized body.
- Americas Silver Corp. reported 4Q and year-end financial results for 2017, including some figures from its operations in Mexico. The San Rafael mine in Sinaloa declared commercial production on December 19, 2017, and was constructed for $16.3 M, 32% lower than the initial project guidance. For 2018 the company plans to produce 1.6 to 2.0 M Oz Ag and 7.2 to 8.0 M Oz AgEq. Cash balance at the end of December was $9.3 M, with net working capital of $11.8 M.
- Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd. reported operating results for the fourth quarter and full year 2017. Santacruz produced 865.4 K Oz AgEq during the year, including 139.7 K Oz AgEq during the fourth quarter. At Veta Grande in Zacatecas 102.1 K tonnes were milled @ 100 g/t Ag (127 g/t AgEq) and Ag recovery of 61% to produce 201.3 K Oz Ag, 424 Oz Au, 466 tonnes Pb, 803 tonnes Zn during the year. At Rosario in San Luis Potosi, 78.9 K tonnes were milled @ 52 g/t Ag (205 g/t AgEq) and a recovery of 85% Ag to produce 112.6 K Oz Ag, 1,007 Oz Au, 157 tonnes Pb, 1,489 tonnes Zn during the same period.
- Magellan Gold Corp. announced it has rehired employees and is restarting its 100% owned SDA mill in Nayarit. Operations are initially to reprocess tailing located at the site, with recovery of precious metals expected to defray holding costs of the mill while new ore sources are acquired. The mill last operated in November 2017 and processed third-party ore on a toll basis.
- Canuc Resources Corp. closed a non-brokered private placement financing with gross proceeds of $1.1 M (San Javier, Sonora).
- Colibri Resource Corp. has closed an over-subscribed first tranche on its previously announced $1 M financing, raising gross proceeds of $1.077 M. Total gross proceeds to be raised between the two tranches is expected to be $1.2 M (Pilar, Sonora).
- Vangold Mining Corp. announced a non-brokered private placement financing to raise up to $2 M, and fund the phase 2 drill program targeting the lower El Pinguico vein extension, and general working capital.
- Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd. has arranged a loan from a private Bolivian mining company, for US$2.3 M. The loan bears interest at 9% per annum, is repayable July 1st, 2018, and is unsecured (Veta Grande, Zacatecas; Rosario, San Luis Potosi).
- Starcore International Mines Ltd. announced the closing of its non-brokered private placement to an insider, for gross proceeds of $125 K (San Martin, Queretaro).
ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT
- Levon Resources Ltd. announced an updated NI-43-101 mineral resource estimate and a 2018 preliminary economic assessment (PEA) for the Cordero project in Chihuahua. The new estimate includes 990 M tonnes of ore @ 12.8 g/t Ag, 0.37% Zn, 0.17% Pb, 0.04 g/t Au as indicated resources and 282.2 M tonnes @ 20.7 g/t Ag, 0.75% Zn, 0.30% Pb, 0.04 g/t Au as inferred resources. The said resource contains 595 M Oz Ag, 1.63 M Oz Au, 12.7 B Lb Zn, 5.6 B Lb Pb in the indicated and inferred categories. The PEA includes an open pit mining rate of 40 K tpd (tonnes per day) to produce mineral concentrate, an annual production of 8 M Oz Ag, 44.8 K tonnes Zn, 31.1 K tonnes Pb, 11,900 Oz Au. Over the 29 year mine life on the PEA, 231 M Oz Ag, 2,863 M Lb Zn, 1,992 M Lb Pb would be produced.” Metallurgy is simple (side by side lead and zinc conventional flotation mills) with 88% overall recoveries after three rounds of bench-scale testing”.
- Alio Gold Inc. provided an update on exploration of its Ana Paula project in Guerrero. To date 1,300 m of the planned 3,800 m of surface drilling have been completed (two of six diamond drill holes), intersecting breccia mineralization as expected and awaiting assay results. Two new breccia targets were discovered by mapping within 1.5 km of the limit of the proposed pit, showing magmatic and hydrothermal breccia mineralization with traces of pyrite and arsenopyrite.
- Leagold Mining Corp. has filed a NI-43-101 technical report for the Los Filos mine in Guerrero. For Los Filos and Bermejal Underground deposits, measured and indicated resources amount to 13.53 M Oz Au, while inferred resources stand at 6.28 M Oz Au (Almost 20 million ounces of gold!).
ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES
- Sonoro Metals Corp. has executed on the letter of intent (LOI) of an option agreement on the Rosario group of properties in Sonora. The Rosario concessions are adjacent to Sonoro’s Cerro Caliche property, covering 403.5 hectares, thereby increasing Sonoro’s land holdings in the area to 1,455 hectares. Sonoro is to acquire 100% interest on the property by paying the vendor (a Tucson resident) US$1.6 M payable in escalating cash installments over 72 months, with the initial installment of US$60 K payable on execution. The vendor is to retain 2% NSR, same that can be bought by Sonoro by US1 M for each one percent.
- Compañía Minera Autlán SAB de CV. is to acquire all the shares of Metallorum Holding, which owns the Lluvia de Oro mine in Sonora. The company is to invest US$25 M in the next three years to increase its manganese and ferroalloys production capacity.
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 below, beautiful quartz vein with bladed calcite pseudomorphs at the museum of El Oro mining district in Estado de Mexico.
TORONTO, Feb. 22, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — McEwen Mining Inc. (NYSE:MUX) (TSX:MUX) today reported fourth quarter and full year results for the period ended December 31, 2017. For the year, McEwen Mining achieved production of 152,329gold equivalent ounces(1)(“GEOs”). Our consolidated net loss for 2017 was $10.6 million(2), or $0.03 per share. Net cash outflow during the year from operating activities was $15.4 million, principally due to higher exploration, development and operating expenses associated with our long-term growth plans. As of February 21, 2018 the Company had cash, investments and precious metals of $60 million and no debt.
ancouver, British Columbia – Capstone Mining Corp. (“Capstone”) (TSX: CS) today announced its financial results for the three months and year ended December 31, 2017. For the three months ended December 31, 2017, operating cash flow before changes in working capital1 was $38.2 million or $0.10 per share, with net income of $29.5 million and adjusted net income of $4.4 million or $0.01 per share after adjusting for certain non-cash and non-recurring charges. Copper production totalled 23,417 tonnes (22,600 tonnes of payable copper) at a C1 cash cost1 of $1.98 per payable pound produced.
COEUR D’ALENE, Idaho–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Hecla Mining Company ( NYSE:HL) today announced it expects to release its fourth quarter and year-end 2017 financial results before market open on Thursday, February 15, 2018.
A conference call and webcast will be held Thursday, February 15, at 10:00 a.m. Eastern Time to discuss these results. You may join the conference call by dialing toll-free 1-855-760-8158 or for international by dialing 1-720-634-2922. The participant passcode is HECLA.
PREMIER GOLD MINES LIMITED (“Premier” or “The Company”) (TSX:PG) is pleased to provide an update on exploration and development plans for 2018. The Company remains focused on realizing the potential of its current asset base, comprised of eight properties located in North America.
Premier has approved a 2018 budget of US$38.8 million for exploration and development. An additional US$6.0 million is to be spent at the McCoy-Cove joint venture in Nevada, funded entirely by Barrick Gold, and based on certain milestones and objectives, up to US$37.9 million to be spent at the Greenstone Gold joint venture in Ontario, funded entirely by Centerra Gold. Premier has sufficient cash to meet all budgeted initiatives in 2018.
By Jorge Cirett
Leisure is the mother of all vices, according to an old Mexican proverb, and having ample spare time during the worst part of the down cycle in the mining industry during 2015 led to creation of this weekly newsletter. First by fueling the creation of the Gambusino Prospector site to publish exploration and mining news, and then noticing that in mid-late 2015 there were news releases worth compiling and spreading, like the private raising of noticeable amounts of cash, and then by compiling the news releases by areas of interest. It was a matter of trial and error until a workable format was born. And remember, there was time available, as the downturn was not throwing much work in our way. The bottom of the downturn was felt in early 2016, with raising spirits in March after PDAC, spirits that continued high through May and Midyear. Things were looking brighter through the end of 2016, but it would take until 2017 for work to noticeably increase in Mexico. The past year has brought relief to drillers and laboratories, as well as some work for geoscientists and other professionals of the exploration area, but full work is still to come. The expectations for this year are high, even if a swing to a full boom is not expected, but a clear optimistic mood can be perceived in the exploration industry. Having said that, compiling and publishing the news releases takes a two or three hours every week day, and compiling, writing and publishing this newsletter takes anything from four hours (a few times in the year) to up to 12 hours in the more extreme cases…… every week of the year. Believe me, we have learnt to dread the times of the year when the quarterly reports are released. Writing the highlights every week is both a pleasure and hard work that satisfies and exhausts. For the last two years Miguel Heredia was taking care of finding and publishing the press releases from companies working in Mexico and I was doing the compression of the information in a few pages. We now have the help of Laura Ramirez in the research and publishing phase, and starting next week Miguel Heredia and I are to start sharing the task of producing the newsletter in alternate weeks.
During the 2nd week of the year (January 8th to January 14th, 2018), things come back to normal with at least 30 press releases being announced by companies working in Mexico. ON MEXICO ISSUES, the illegal blockade at El Limon-Guajes mine in Guerrero continues. A government sanctioned process to set a date to clear the issue will be held at the end of the month (the end of the month!). ON EXPLORATION, in Sonora, Riverside is awaiting drill results from its Glor and Clemente projects and announced its intention to drill during 2018 its Cecilia project; Canuc informed the delineation of several breccia bodies at its San Javier project; San Marco released high-grade copper results from a new zone at its Chunibas project. In Chihuahua Golden Goliath is in the process to select drill targets at its San Timoteo project. In Coahuila, Silver Bull announced high-grade channel sample results from underground workings at its Sierra Mojada project. In Durango, Riverside announced its intention to drill the El Capitan project during 2018. In Guanajuato, Vangold is to measure the underground stockpile (backfill) at its Pinguico mine. In Estado de Mexico Impact Silver updated on exploration on the Zacualpan district. In Hidalgo, Prospero released interesting results on the first drill campaign at the El Petate project. ON MINING, Seven companies: Torex Gold, Coeur Mining, Hecla Mining, Endeavour Silver, Capstone Mining, Alio Gold and Alamos presented preliminary Q4 and annual production results for 2017. Santacruz Silver announced the commencement of construction work to expand the mill capacity at Veta Grande, Zacatecas. ON FINANCING, Avino Silver is now formally on the TSX. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Southern Silver updated its resource estimate on Cerro Las Minitas in Durango to over 50 M Oz Ag, 400 M Lb Pb, 1,600 M Lb Zn. Leagold released the high-grade results of the last 15 holes of its 2017 infill and expansion drill program at the Bermejal underground deposit in Guerrero. First Majestic drilled over 800 holes and 156,000 m on its six operating mines and one prospect during 2017. For 2018 its plan is to drill 183,000 m on the same properties and prospect. Minera Alamos has completed the geotechnical reports on the La Fortuna project in Durango, to submit for approval to SEMARNAT. Kootenay Silver is to focus work in 2018 in the expansion of resources and increasing grade on its La Cigarra project in Chihuahua. Mexican Gold plans to focus exploration work in expanding the resource and finding more orebodies at its Las Minas property in Veracruz. Starcore International is to prepare a PEA on the La Fe property in Sinaloa. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Torex Gold informed two of the largest communities near its El Limon-Guajes mine in Guerrero, Nuevo Balsas and Salvador Trujano, have publicly supported the company and have asked the state government to intervene to lift the illegal blockade. First Majestic has entered into an agreement to acquire Primero Mining in a deal valued in $320 M.
ON MEXICO ISSUES
- The illegal blockade at El Limon-Guajes mine in Guerrero continues. Torex Gold informed that two communities, Nuevo Balsas and Valerio Trujano have publicly supported the company and have asked the state government to intervene to lift the illegal blockade. The company is using an alternate route to enter and inspect the facilities while a government sanctioned process for selecting the workers union by vote is underway with a meeting scheduled for January 30, 2018, at which time the parties are expected to agree to a timeline for a vote (vote that the blockading union is expected to try to delay).
- Impact Silver Corp. updated on exploration work at the Santa Teresa target, located on the Royal mines of Zacualpan district in Estado de Mexico. Numerous north-south and northeast striking veins transect the Santa Teresa area, with 197 assays greater than 1 g/t Au and up to 114.5 g/t Au. Half of the veins have extremely low sulfide content. The presence of a feldspar porphyry is considered to enhance the prospectivity of the area.
- Riverside Resources Corp. informed on its exploration plans for 2018, which include the reception of drill results from the Glor and Clemente projects in Sonora, the drilling of the El Capitan project in Durango and Cecilia in Sonora. New partnerships will be explored to advance the Tajitos, (Sonora), La Silla (Sinaloa), Thor (Sonora) and Ariel (Sonora) projects.
- Vangold Mining Corp. is to star underground drilling at its Pinguico property in Guanajuato on January 15, 2018. The drilling is to focus on grade definition of the underground stockpile (backfill) which is thought to amount 500 K tonnes, to define grade and metallurgical properties. The phase 2 program is to target the Pinguico vein to depth and on strike.
- Canuc Resources Corp. announced that several breccia targets have been exposed and sampled at its San Javier project in Sonora. Recent mapping has shown that the Carranza breccia could extend over an area roughly 400 m by 100 m. Select zones of this breccia have previously assayed 238 g/t Ag, 0.7 g/t Au over 11 m and 133 g/t Ag, 1.1 g/t Au over 6.5 m. Another breccia has been mapped on the Jazmin workings, with local high grade silver-gold results. Over 400 samples have been sent to the lab, assays are pending.
- San Marco Resources Inc. released assay results from the newly discovered Cu-Ag mineralization on its Chunibas project in Sonora. The rock chip sampling followed the recognition of a geochemical anomaly in a soil survey, resulting in the discovery of isolated outcrops on otherwise covered terrain of presumably intermediate volcanic rocks strongly altered by an assemblage of epidote>chlorite>quartz>calcite>specularite. Results of 16 samples include 0.1%, 5.9%, 0.87%, 0.76%, 1.38%, 0.97% 1.8%, 0.41%, 3.72%, 0.25% Cu; 1, 51, 6, 8, 19, 4, 17, 4, 66, 4 g/t Ag.
- Silver Bull Resources Inc. informed on high-grade results from channel samples in newly opened and reconditioned historic workings at its Sierra Mojada project in Coahuila. The new zone comprises 350 m of old working, where 39 channel samples up to 2 m in length were collected, with 21 samples returning over 10% Zn and a peak value of 30.7% Zn; 21 samples over 100 g/t Ag and a peak value of 606 g/t Ag; nine samples over 5% Pb and a peak value of 17.6% Pb. “Our underground geological mapping shows a number of high angle structures up to 2 meters wide containing sulphide mineralization grading up to 1,300 grams per ton silver, 42% zinc, 18% lead, and 13% copper that appear to feed into the overlying oxide zone.”
- Golden Goliath Resources Ltd. is to complete early in 2018 the drill targeting that was commenced on 2017 at its San Timoteo property in Chihuahua. Past work included a review of past data, including geology, geochemistry, structural geology, geophysics and drilling. Final drafting and final drill target selection remain to be completed. The company anticipates receiving a US$100 K option payment in 2018, and a final payment of US$2.8 M in November 2018. This would provide more than enough funding required for drilling without the need for any further dilution that a private placement would create.
- Prospero Silver Corp. released drill results from its EL Petate prospect in Hidalgo. Highlights include 24.9 m @ 0.76 g/t Au, 22 g/t Ag; 12.6 m @ 0.51 g/t Au; 16.0 m @ 0.75 g/t Au, 2 g/t Ag; 3.9 m @ 1.18 g/t Au, 4 g/t Ag; 14.7 m @ 0.19 g/t Au, 2 g/t Ag; 1.1 m @ 10 g/t Ag, 1.5% Zn; 10.0 m @ 0.49 g/t Au, 24 g/t Ag; 3.2 m @ 1.96 g/t Au, 34 g/t Ag, 0.1% Zn; 19.3 m @ 0.32 g/t Au, 1 g/t Ag; 12.8 m @ 0.28 g/t Au, 6 g/t Ag. These holes were drilled on the El Tajo and Apartadero SE targets. Prospero is now planning to drill the Pachuca SE prospect, with funding being provided by partner Fortuna Silver.
- Torex Gold Resources Inc. informed that 241 K Oz Au were poured during 2017 at its El Limon-Guajes mine in Guerrero (The production is for the first 10 months of the year, before the illegal blockade by a union trying to grab a contract that continues to date).
- Coeur Mining Corp. announced fourth quarter and annual production, including figures from its Mexican operations. At Palmarejo, in Chihuahua, during the fourth quarter 389.5 K tonnes were milled @ 215 g/t Ag, 3.1 g/t Au, with a recovery rate of 87% Ag, 92% Au, to produce 2.35 M Oz Ag, 37,537 Oz Au. During the year 1.5 M tonnes were milled @ 175 g/t Ag, 2.8 g/t Au.
- Hecla Mining Co. released preliminary silver and gold production results for the fourth quarter and full year 2018, including figures from its operations in Mexico. At San Sebastian in Durango, during the fourth quarter 759.1 K Oz Ag, 5,955 Oz Au were produced, while 3.26 M Oz Ag, 25,177 Oz Au were produced during 2017. Cash and cash equivalents stood at $219 M at the end of the year.
- Endeavour Silver Corp. produced 4.9 M Oz Ag, 53,007 Oz Au on its three operating mines in Mexico during 2017. During the fourth quarter 1.39 M Oz Ag, 14,577 Oz Au were produced from its Guanaceví mine in Durango, and the Bolañitos and El Cubo mines in Guanajuato. At El Compas in Zacatecas, initial production is targeted on March 2018, At Terronera in Jalisco permits have been received to build the mine and the plant, while receipt of the dumps and tailings permit is awaited.
- Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd. reports that abiding by the terms of the LOI signed with Carrizal Mining S.A. de C.V., Carrizal has commenced construction works to expand the Veta Grande mill to 750 tonnes per day (tpd). In addition Santacruz has received permit for a surface drill program at the Veta Grande project which includes 6,000 m in 15 drill holes on the first phase, funded by Carrizal.Capstone Mining Corp. released Q4 and full year 2017 production results, including figures from its Mexican operations. At Cozamin in Zacatecas, 219.9 K tonnes were mined in the fourth quarter, 223.5 K tonnes were milled (2,430 tpd) @ 1.98% Cu, 0.71% Zn, 0.06% Pb, 46 g/t Ag, recovering 96.2% Cu, 64.2% Zn, 0.9% Pb, 79.7% Ag, to produce 4,254 tonnes Cu, 1,015 tonnes Zn, 3 tonnes Pb, 263.3 K Oz Ag. During the year, 912 K tonnes were mined and milled (2,499 tpd) @ 1.91% Cu, 0.71% Zn, 0.07% Pb, 43 g/t Ag, with recoveries of 96.1% Cu, 65.5% Zn, 8.0% Pb, 78.7% Ag, to produce 16,732 tonnes Cu, 4,232 tonnes Zn, 50 tonnes Pb, 1.0 M Oz Ag.
- Alio Gold Inc. informed on preliminary production results from its San Francisco mine in Sonora for the fourth quarter and full year 2017. During the fourth quarter 1.72 M tonnes were processed @ 0.46 g/t Au, 6.23 M tonnes of waste were moved for a total of 7.99 M tonnes mined, to produce 16,070 Oz Au and 7,873 Oz Ag.
- Alamos Gold Inc. reported fourth quarter and annual 2017 production, including figures from its operations in Mexico. During the fourth quarter Mulatos and El Chanate produced 42,700 and 12,100 Oz Au respectively, and 160,000 and 60,400 Oz Au on the whole year. The budget for development of La Yaqui Grande and Cerro Pelon is $13 M, focusing on engineering, permitting and early stage construction. During 2018 open pit grades mined and stacked on the heap leach pad are expected to range between 0.75 and 0.95 g/t Au. “A total of $13 million and 41,500 m has been budgeted at Mulatos for exploration in 2018 with the main areas of focus being El Carricito, La Yaqui Norte – Halcon, El Refugio, San Carlos and the near mine area”. At El Chanate mining activities are expected to cease mid-2018. Total crushed and run of mine ore is expected to average 9,700 tpd @ 0.69 g/t Au.
- ON FINANCING
- Avino Silver & Gold Mines Ltd. has received final approval from the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) to list its common shares and warrants on January 8th, 2018. Concurrently with the TSX listing, the Shares and Warrants will be delisted from the TSX Venture Exchange (TSX-V) (Avino, Durango).
- ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT
- Southern Silver Exploration Corp. updated the mineral resource estimate at its Cerro Las Minitas JV project in Durango (SSV 40%, Electrum Global Holdings LP 60%). The resource was calculated on four deposits: Blind zone, El Sol, Las Victorias and Skarn Front, with 10.1 M tonnes @ 102 g/t Ag, 0.10 g/t Au, 1.4% Pb, 3.6% Zn, 0.15% Cu as indicated resources, holding 33.4 M Oz Ag, 34 K Oz Au, 319 M Lb Pb, 813 M Lb Zn and 8.7 M tonnes @ 74 g/t Ag, 0.04 g/t Au, 0.7% Pb, 4.5% Zn as inferred resources containing 20.7 M Oz Ag, 12 k Oz Au, 131 M Lb Pb, 870 M Lb Zn.
- Leagold Mining Corp. reported results for the final 15 drill holes at the Bermejal Underground project at the Los Filos mine in Guerrero. These infill and step-out holes intersected high grade intervals like (true width): 4.16 m @ 9.2 g/t Au; 3.05 m @ 8.8 g/t Au; 1.77 m @ 10.1 g/t Au; 1.77 m @ 61.3 g/t Au; 7.43 m @ 12.4 g/t Au; 5.12 m @ 8.1 g/t Au; 3.89 m @ 7.0 g/t Au; 8.08 m @ 5.9 g/t Au; 13.59 m @ 4.75 g/t Au; 6.89 m @ 12.3 g/t Au; 14.08 m @ 20.2 g/t Au; 7.34 m @ 35.6 g/t Au; 10.49 m @ 8.79 g/t Au; 14.33 m @ 8.0 g/t Au; 23.57 m @ 6.1 g/t Au. A total of 111 holes comprising 56,280 m were drilled in this program, from April to December. To date the Bermejal Underground deposit contains 2.1 M Oz Au contained on 10.8 M tonnes @ 6.0 g/t Au. Los Filos currently operates two open pits, Los Filos and Bermejal, and the Los Filos underground mine.
- First Majestic Silver Corp. disclosed a year-end review of its 2017 exploration program, which includes over 156,500 m of diamond drilling on 807 holes across its six operating mines and the Plomosas project. Highlights include a new discovery at Ermitaño West (in Sonora) with drill TW intersects of 37 m @ 3.0 g/t Au, 50 g/t Ag; 12.9 m @ 4.7 g7t Au, 277 g/t Ag; identification of the Main Vein extension to the west at Santa Elena in Sonora; discovery of the La Fe replacement orebody at La Encantada in Coahuila; discovery of the Cerro de Santiago vein at La Parrilla, in Durango; the extension of the Santa Teresa vein to the south at Del Toro mine in Zacatecas; the continuation of the Hedionda vein in the San Martin mine in Jalisco; the Nazareno northwest extension and the Nazareno de Ancas finding at La Guitarra in Estado de Mexico; the extension of the Plomosas vein and finding a new stockwork system at Plomosas in Sinaloa. For 2018, a 183,000 m drilling program is envisaged across the six operating mines and the Plomosas project.
- Minera Alamos Inc. has completed the geotechnical studies for the approval of its mine development permits for the La Fortuna gold project in Durango. The study that includes the design of the containment facilities comprise the final data package to be submitted to the environmental authorities (SEMARNAT).
- Kootenay Silver Inc. informed on 2017 activities at La Cigarra in Chihuahua. The drilling of 37 core holes resulted on significant discoveries In the RAM and Las Venadas zones. Other activities include the re-logging of the entire La Cigarra deposit, mapping and sampling of seven other prospective zones. Work in 2018 is to focus in increasing the current resource and grade at La Cigarra. At La Negra, in Sonora, partner Pan American Silver announced the results of 26 holes from an infill program, including 7.5 m @ 529 g/t Ag within 40.8 m @ 194 g/t Ag.
- Mexican Gold Corp. informed on work completed during 2017 at its Las Minas property in Veracruz, which includes the completion of an initial 43-100 resources estimate for two of eight known mineralized zones, the completion of 5,873 m of drilling at El Dorado/Juan Bran and Cinco Señores zones, the extension of several zones, the identification of a parallel mineralized zone at Cinco Señores, the completion of geophysical surveys and the purchase agreements on several claims. For 2018 the focus is to expand the initial resource on El Dorado/Juan Bran and the Santa Cruz zone; exploration drilling of the Cinco Señores and Las Minillas zone; the field exploration at the Santa Cruz, Pueblo Nuevo and Changaro zone.
- Starcore International Mines Ltd. has engaged Global Kompas to undertake a preliminary economic assessment (PEA) of the Santa Fe project in Sinaloa. The property was previously optioned by another company, completing two explorations programs up to 2014 which concluded with no mineral resource, but that discovered multiple veins and mineral ore shoots.
- ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES
- Torex Gold Resources Inc. informed on the state of affairs on the illegal blockade at its El Limon-Guajes mine in Guerrero, announcing that two of the larger communities, Nuevo Balsas and Valerio Trujano have publicly supported the company and have asked the state government to intervene to lift the illegal blockade. Access to the mine site has been gained through a road used during construction on the Rio Balsas Ejido land, allowing crews to inspect the site, make maintenance plans and plans to re-start operations if the security of the site can be assured. The government sanctioned process for a workers’ vote to select the union they want to represent them is underway with a meeting scheduled for January 30, 2018, at which time the parties are expected to agree to a timeline for a vote (date that the blockading union is expected to try to delay).
- First Majestic Silver Corp. has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire all issued and outstanding shares of Primero Mining Corp. by exchanging Primero’s shares for First Majestic shares on the basis of 0.03325 of a First Majestic common share for each Primero common share. Concurrently First Majestic has entered into agreement with Wheaton Precious Metals International Ltd. (WPM) whereby the current silver streaming interest at Primero’s San Dimas Ag-Au mine in Durango will be terminated. First Majestic and WPM are to enter into a new stream arrangement based on 25% of the gold equivalent production at San Dimas, with ongoing payments of $600 per AuEq Oz delivered under the agreement. As part of the transaction WPM will receive 20.9 M common shares of First Majestic, valued at $151 M. The total transaction values is estimated at $320 M.
- 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 below, argillitized porphyritic intrusive with quartz veining and minor sericite alteration still visible, in a prospect of the Durango Altiplano. Photo by Jorge Cirett.