Special Report: Manuka has uncovered more high-grade gold beneath the existing pit at its Mt Boppy mine in NSW’s Cobar Basin, increasing the potential of a resource extension and longer mine life.

Recent in-pit grade control drilling by Manuka Resources (ASX:MKR) at its Mt Boppy mine has hit paydirt, returning high-grade gold intercepts from ~10-35m below the current planned pit floor.

Top hits include 24m at 6.36 grams per tonne (g/t) gold from 48m, 33m at 4.15g/t from 19m, 11m at 5.27g/t from 44m and 6m at 7.14g/t from 62m.

The news moved shares up as much as 9 per cent on Friday to an intra-day peak of 48c.


Manuka Resources (ASX:MKR) share price chart:


The zone of high grades corresponds with a strike and dip flexure of the Mt Boppy main lode, reflecting the strong structural controls on mineralisation.

Manuka only lit up the ASX boards in mid-July but has already completed nearly 25,000m of exploration, in-fill and grade control drilling across both its Mt Boppy and Wonawinta mines.

All of the work so far has contributed to a better understanding of the controls and likely extent of high-grade mineralisation at and below the current design pit floor at Mt Boppy.

Long section view looking east of Mount Boppy showing reported drill intercepts, other drill holes and interpreted extent of high-grade mineralisation (dash line). Grey surface marks edge of backfilled stopes. Pic: Supplied.

Manuka’s plan was initially just to mine and process the existing reserve at Mt Boppy, which will continue through to the second quarter of 2021 and generate strong earnings.

But executive chairman Dennis Karp says that with the grades Manuka is seeing, the potential for an extension to the resource at Mt Boppy is something the company is now very focused on understanding further.

“These are outstanding results and compare very favourably with the current JORC reserve grade of 3.09g/t,” he said.

“The company believes it now has sufficient confidence to begin analysing options for exploiting the clear potential below the proposed pit floor.”

Grade control drilling has now been completed at Mt Boppy and Manuka will begin an economic analysis of the gold potential below current proposed pit floor once all the results are received.


Multiple revenue streams

Mt Boppy is just one of several revenue streams that could be serious money-makers for the company.

Once Manuka has finished gold mining and production at Mt Boppy, the company plans to move to silver production at the Wonawinta mine, also in the Cobar Basin of NSW.

Diamond drilling started this week at Wonawinta, as a precursor to a long-awaited deeper drilling program beginning in early January 2021.

Manuka’s plan is to start by processing the silver stockpiles and then move onto the mining of the higher-grade oxides currently in the company’s resource model, which will sustain production for another four years.


This article was developed in collaboration with Manuka Resources, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.


This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.