LONDON: 13 April 2018 – ECR Minerals plc is pleased to provide the following update regarding exploration at the Bung Bong gold prospect within the Avoca tenement (EL5387), central Victoria, Australia.
ECR’s wholly owned Australian subsidiary Mercator Gold Australia Pty Ltd (“MGA”) has 100% ownership of the Avoca project, along with three other exploration licences in Victoria.
- Positive Bung Bong geochemical results and geological observations indicate several fault-related quartz and quartz spurs to test as potential high-volume targets for gold mineralisation at the surface.
- Bung Bong prospect defined by numerous shallow historic workings over a 400 m strike length and up to 80 m wide. The number of quartz-related structures and a paucity of deep workings at Bung Bong provides opportunity for an open cut operation
- Road cutting to the north of the workings has exposed seven west-dipping faults over a 40m zone with associated quartz veining. One hypothesis is that the geochemical pattern could correspond to the seven faults branching from an anticline.
- Bung Bong prospect to be one of several prospects to be drilled across the Avoca tenement. A first pass diamond drilling programme of six holes to 70m depth to assess the nature and continuity of the faults and associated quartz veining and gold mineralisation to begin imminently (15 April 2018)
- Early indications from pipeline of geochemical surveys carried out at additional prospects within MGA’s four licence areas are highly encouraging indicating excellent potential for disseminated (Fosterville-style) and nuggetty (Bendigo\Ballarat-style) gold.
Further to ECR’s announcement of 20 February 2018, a programme of field mapping and geochemical sampling at the higher priority prospects within MGA’s licences in Victoria has been carried out. The purpose of the programme was to augment existing data and to use the results of the geochemical and surface work help prioritise prospects and define drill targets. The geochemical results are now being processed and interpreted, and the first prospect for which this process has been completed, with drill targets selected, is Bung Bong.
A diamond drilling programme commencing at the Bung Bong prospect is due to begin imminently (15 April 2018) and drilling at several other target prospect areas is planned. These additional target prospects will be determined by follow-on results of the geochemical and surface work carried across MGA’s four licences and where all necessary permits are in place. Particularly early indications from MGA’s Blue Moon prospect within the Baillieston licence are highly encouraging and the Company looks forward to providing an update shortly.
Craig Brown, CEO of ECR, commented: “In order to maximise the chances of drilling success, MGA has invested time and effort in developing a geological understanding of our multiple target areas within this prolific gold producing region of Victoria prior to further exploring these further. We are now excited to be imminently commencing with an initial drill programme pass of six holes of up to 70m in depth at our Bung bong prospect within our Avoca licence area.
The results of geochemical work carried out at the Bung Bong prospect have been positive and when combined with geological surveys has given us the confidence to commence our drill program. Road cuttings on the nearby highway show multiple west-dipping faults linked by associated quartz vein networks that may have the potential for a broad zone of mineralisation at surface with open cut opportunities.
Bung Bong is only one of multiple high priority targets within our four Victorian gold licences and we look forward to providing further updates soon with regards to the geochemical results at some of our additional target areas beginning with the Blue Moon prospect, which have been highly encouraging so far.
The anticipated outcome of this first programme is to establish if the fault, fold and quartz geometries and mineralising relationships are indicative for a significant orebody for follow-up RC resource drilling. We look forward to updating the market in due course.”
Bung Bong prospect geology
The host rocks at Bung Bong are deep marine sandstones and shales (turbidites). Gold is hosted by fault-related quartz and quartz spurs. This structural and stratigraphic setting is of a kind found throughout central Victoria, including in the prolific Ballarat, Bendigo and Fosterville gold districts.
The prospect is defined by numerous shallow historic workings extending over a strike length of 400m within a zone up to 80m wide. A road cutting to the north of the workings reveals seven west-dipping faults with associated quartz veining (Fig. 1). The quartz follows the faults, bedding and cleavage. Bedding and cleavage veins concentrate around faults to create spur zones. Massive and spurry quartz zones reach up to 8m in width and make attractive high-volume targets for exploration.
The seven faults are spread across 40m of the road cutting (Fig. 1). The faults transect steep east-dipping beds. There are no major folds observed in the road cutting. A projection of the faults beneath the road cutting will eventually lead to an anticlinal fold and hopefully within the area of the planned drilling.
In all mineral exploration projects, activities in the field lead to hypotheses which are tested by further work, the results of which advance the geological understanding of the prospect. In the case of Bung Bong, it is hypothesised that the intersection of the faults and the anticline will constitute an attractive target zone, as found in the Bendigo area. Elsewhere, spurry zones associated with the fault system may also form attractive targets, especially where intersecting beds more favourable for vein development..
MGA has been utilising a portable XRF (pXRF) to delineate proxy minerals associated with gold, notably arsenic (As), in an effort to follow and define ore shoots at the surface (Fig. 2). The pXRF enables the rapid collection of closely-spaced geochemical data, which is important for evaluating the relatively narrow reefs in central Victoria. Broad sample spacing risks stepping over reefs.
MGA has run a series of pXRF traverses across the Bung Bong prospect, and this work has revealed a high arsenic zone reaching 90m wide and closely associated with historic workings. High arsenic values were recorded adjacent to faults 6 and 7 that contained the large spurry zones in the road cutting (Fig 1). One hypothesis is that the geochemical pattern could correspond to the seven faults intersecting an anticline, with the higher-grade mineralisation near the intersecting structures (Fig. 2).
The initial purpose of drilling at Bung Bong will be to assess the nature and continuity of the faults and associated quartz veining and gold mineralisation. To achieve this, a first pass diamond drilling programme of six holes to 70m depth will test the down-plunge continuation of the mineralisation to the north along the associated faults and attempt to locate the anticline.
ECR is a mineral exploration and development company. ECR’s wholly owned Australian subsidiary Mercator Gold Australia has 100% ownership of the Avoca, Bailieston, Moormbool and Timor gold exploration licences in central Victoria, Australia.
ECR has earned a 25% interest in the Danglay epithermal gold project, an advanced exploration project located in a prolific gold and copper mining district in the north of the Philippines. An NI43-101 technical report was completed in respect of the Danglay project in December 2015, and is available for download from ECR’s website.
ECR’s wholly owned Argentine subsidiary Ochre Mining has 100% ownership of the SLM gold project in La Rioja, Argentina. Exploration at SLM has focused on identifying small tonnage mesothermal gold deposits which may be suitable for relatively near-term production.
MARKET ABUSE REGULATIONS (EU) No. 596/2014
The information contained within this announcement is deemed by the Company to constitute inside information as stipulated under the Market Abuse Regulations (EU) No. 596/2014 (MAR). Upon the publication of this announcement via Regulatory Information Service (RIS), this inside information is now considered to be in the public domain.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT:
|ECR Minerals plc||Tel: +44 (0)20 7929 1010|
|David Tang, Non-Executive Chairman|
|Craig Brown, Director & CEO|
|WH Ireland Ltd||Tel: +44 (0)161 832 2174|
|Katy Mitchell/James Sinclair-Ford|
|Optiva Securities Ltd||Tel: +44 (0)203 137 1902|
|FlowComms||Tel: +44 (0)7891 677 441|
FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS
This announcement may include forward looking statements. Such statements may be subject to numerous known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual results or events to differ materially from current expectations. There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be accurate and therefore actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward looking statements. Any forward-looking statements contained herein speak only as of the date hereof (unless stated otherwise) and, except as may be required by applicable laws or regulations (including the AIM Rules for Companies), the Company disclaims any obligation to update or modify such forward-looking statements because of new information, future events or for any other reason.