Right now, any explorer with ground in the Youanmi province of WA is a hot ticket for investors.

The nearology crowd is scrambling to peg ground or dust-off unloved projects following some high profile exploration success from Spectrum Metals (ASX:SPX), Venus Metals (ASX:VMC) and Rox Resources (ASX:RXL).

Graphite play Metals Australia (ASX:MLS) has raised the hood on its non-core Manindi project, less than 5km from Spectrum’s high-grade Penny West North discovery.

Today, Metals Australia announced a geological mapping and prospecting campaign on the under-explored southern tenement area.

But there’s also interesting stuff happening at the northern end, it says, like a significant nickel anomaly called ‘Dibbler’ “which was not followed up but has now become a high priority target”.

Then there’s prospect generator Cullen Resources (ASX:CUL), which has two new, substantial exploration licence applications totalling ~350sqkm south east of Penny West.

Venus Metals’ Matt Hogan is a big fan of nearology – which is why the explorer has a history of picking up prospective projects adjacent to existing mines or big mineral discoveries.

But Venus has spent the last five years assembling a big Younami land package (on a tip from Mark Creasy, no less), which actually makes it a modern-time early mover.

Today, this package just got bigger, with a new 108.4sqkm exploration license (EL) application covering the eastern granite – greenstone contact of the Youanmi greenstone belt, “considered highly prospective for Archean gold mineralisation”.

Exploration activities on the new tenement will begin immediately once the EL has been granted, Venus says.