B2Gold and Calibre Digging (by Hand) for Gold in Nicaragua
B2Gold has budgeted $1.2 million for exploration on the Calibre JV properties in 2014 and all Calibre has to do is hope that B2Gold remains interested in advancing the property
VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA–(Marketwired – May 7, 2014) – Calibre Mining Corp. (TSX VENTURE:CXB) (the “Company” or “Calibre”) is pleased to announce results from follow-up trenching and sampling at the Minnesota gold project within the B2Gold Corp. (“B2Gold”) (TSX:BTO)(NYSE MKT:BTG) Joint Venture on the Borosi concessions, northeast Nicaragua. Calibre controls a 49.0% interest in the joint venture and B2Gold has a 51.0% interest and is project operator. B2Gold has the right to earn an additional 19.0% in the Borosi concessions joint venture by spending $6.0 million in additional project expenditures over three years. The 2014 exploration program on the B2Gold joint venture is budgeted at $1.2 million.
This is a fairly short release, but it gives us an opportunity to talk about a few companies we haven’t covered before in a region we haven’t covered before.
What caught our attention about this particular release is that the project operator and majority owner of this project, B2Gold, is a profitable gold miner (don’t see these words together too often anymore) with two operating mines in Nicaragua. This particular project is a joint venture with B2Gold and Calibre Resources and is located in northeastern Nicaragua.
While many may remember the civil war in Nicaragua that stole headlines in the 1980’s (Remember Iran-Contra?), the country has spent last few decades rebuilding and modernizing. By all accounts, modern Nicaragua is considered to be politically stable, relatively safe and “open for business”. In fact, the country recently granted a 50 year concession to a Chinese firm to allow for the construction and operation of a $40 billion shipping canal to compete with Panama! This is not to say there isn’t opposition to foreign owned developments. Environmental groups and specifically groups of “artisan miners” have opposed the expansions by foreign mining companies. Still, its a far cry from the violence and instability of 20 years ago.
B2Gold owns the Limon and La Libertad mines in Nicaragua and is the country’s largest gold exporter. They are partnered with Calibre on both the Minnesota Project and the more advanced Primavera Project as part of their ongoing exploration of the region. While B2Gold’s operating mines are epithermal gold deposits related to volcanic rocks, the Primavera and Minnesota Projects appear to be related to a Gold-Copper Porphyry system. Porphyry deposits are typically low grade, but very high tonnage deposits and are the world’s largest source of copper.
Calibre has other projects in the area and some joint ventures with other companies, but we’ll limit this discussion to their B2Gold joint venture. The Primavera Project (about 20 km south) is a more advanced exploration project and has undergone some scoping-study level work and metallurgical testing. While there are no resources or reserves for this project, the grades are fairly good for a porphyry project with significant intervals from 0.5-1.25 g/t gold and 0.25-0.7 % copper. Generally a porphyry deposit needs to have a copper equivalent of about 1% to have a hope of being economic and these grades potentially put it in that range or higher.
By comparison, B2Gold’s Limon mine produces from grade of 4-5 g/t gold while La Libertad range from 2-3 g/t gold.
- Trenching at the Minnesota gold project has intersected zones of continuous gold mineralization including: 14.80 metres grading 1.85 g/t Au (MINTR14-006) and 8.5 metres grading 1.22 g/t Au (MINTR14-001)
B2Gold has completed a series of trenches as well as gridded auger drilling designed to further define and extend the defined gold mineralization at Minnesota. The Minnesota target area consists of intrusive hosted veinlet’s within a structurally prepared area with widespread alteration. The target is defined by a strong 1.75 km x 1.25 km gold in soil anomaly.
The Minnesota project is a very early stage project with some gold and copper soil anomalies, a few trenches and sampling from hand-drilled shallow holes. Trenching is just what it sounds like: Rock Sampling along shallow trenches cut by sawing, blasting or digging along the area of interest. Although they haven’t posted photos of these trenches, we’ve posted a picture of a similar trench the from their Primavera Project site at the top of this article.
Table 1 – Trenching Results – Minnesota Gold Project
|Trench ID||From (m)||To (m)||Interval (m)||Au (g/t)|
|Notes; * Represents entire length of trench – open ended in both directions|
|Length weighted averages from uncut assays.|
|**Trench MINTR14-005 results have been received for 4.7 m of a total length of 14.9 m|
Trenches MINTR14-001 to MINTR14-005 are located 100 metres southwest of the previously reported channel samples which included the following intercepts: MINTR13-001; 7.5m grading 3.93 g/t Au (open), MINTR13-002; 9.2m grading 4.17 g/t Au (open), and MINTR13-003; 7.0m grading 1.45 g/t Au (open).
The main takeaway from these results is that they are recording gold values throughout. As the company completes more sampling around the property they will begin to develop and prioritize targets for future work.
Trench MINTR14-006 is located 500 metres northeast of trenches MINTR14-001 to MINTR14-005 in the extension area currently being tested by auger drilling.
New results have also been received for a series of gridded auger holes which have been completed within and to the northeast of the existing surface anomaly. This work is designed to further define the nature and extent of the gold mineralization. Results have extended the gold mineralization a further 300 metres to the northeast. The new auger anomaly is approximately 125 metres wide with gold assays consistently above 100ppb Au. Trench MINTR14-006 is located within the extension anomaly and includes a composite of 9.80m grading 2.42 g/t Au. A total of 511 rock grid samples have been collected to date using a hand auger to drill down to the rock-saprolite boundary at depths down to 8.25 metres. Overall the anomalous trench and auger rock samples define an area of pervasive gold mineralization approximately 700 metres long and up to 125 metres wide with the target being open for expansion.
The company is using a hand auger to drill down through the soil to the “saprolite” for sampling. Saprolite is highly weathered bedrock that sits at the boundary between the bedrock below and the soil above. The holes are being drilled on a grid across the property and results mapped. Again, the resulting map will help define and prioritize future targets for drilling and/or geophysics.
Quality assurance and quality control procedures include the systematic insertion of blanks, standards and duplicates into the rock and soil sample strings. Samples are placed in sealed bags and shipped directly to Acme Labs in Managua, Nicaragua for sample preparation and then to Acme Labs in Vancouver, Canada for gold fire assay and ICP-MS multi element analyses. The technical content in this news release was read and approved by Gregory Smith, P.Geo, President and CEO of the Company who is the Qualified Person as defined by NI 43-101.
Quality assurance is an critical part of any sampling and assay program.
About Calibre Mining Corp.
Calibre controls a 100% interest in 429 km2 of mineral concessions. Additionally, Calibre has joint venture exploration programs underway with B2Gold Corp. on 322.3 km2 of concessions which includes the Primavera gold-copper porphyry discovery, and has optioned the 33.6 km2Rosita gold-copper-silver project to Alder Resources Ltd. Major shareholders of Calibre include gold producer B2Gold Corp.
At $0.04 per share, a hundred shares of Calibre will cost you the about the same as a large Cafe Latte at your favourite coffee shop. Such is the state of the mining industry. Still, B2Gold has budgeted $1.2 million for exploration on the Calibre JV properties in 2014 and all Calibre has to do is hope that B2Gold remains interested in advancing the property.