Marmota has kicked off drilling for rare earths at Target 21 within its South Australian tenements, a prospect it has nicknamed ‘Manna from Heaven’.

Marmota’s (ASX:MEU) immediate neighbour Petratherm discovered its highest-value and most exceptional intercept of Chinese-style ionic clay-hosted REE mineralisation at Hole 590 right on the Marmota tenement boundary, just 15m from surface, grading 2,701 parts per million (ppm) over 3m total rare earth oxides (TREO) – of which 1,016ppm are high-value magnet REEs.

This is a gift from up high for Marmota. Petratherm’s subsequent exploration also found that REE grades decreased to the east of the discovery hole 590, away from Marmota’s tenement:  i.e. conversely that the most exceptional high-value magnet REE grade intercepted was on the Marmota tenement boundary.

Marmota is understandably excited that it is now drilling the Manna from Heaven target aka Target 21.

“It is not every day that someone makes a discovery on your tenement boundary, and so close to surface, which is also why our Target 21 is called ‘Manna from Heaven’. At Target 21, Marmota is carrying out a series of drill holes across varying grid sizes to see where Hole 590 leads, as well as carrying out a more general target program over the tenement,” chairman Dr Colin Rose said.

“Intriguingly, this is the first time that many parts of this tenement have been drill tested.”

Just the first of many

Dr Rose added that Target 21 is just one of a number of highly prospective REE targets that Marmota is drilling under Stage 1 of its regional reconnaissance program.

The Stage 1 program is planned to consist of 240 aircore holes totalling 8,000m, 130 auger holes totalling 650m and 11 deeper reverse circulation holes totalling 1,000m.

This is the company’s largest regional reconnaissance program ever with multiple targets over multiple minerals across its 10,000km2 tenement package.

While Petratherm’s discovery of REEs across the eastern border of its tenements was undoubtedly what sparked its own exploration plans at Target 21, which have been brewing for more than a year, Marmota is also egged on by the simple fact that clay systems of this type tend to be regionally extensive.

Nor is REE all that the company is chasing.

Its tenements in the famed Gawler Craton also hosts its high-grade Aurora Tank gold deposit, where drilling has returned multiple intersections exceeding 100 g/t gold over 1m, all close to surface.

Metallurgical testwork is now underway at Aurora Tank to optimise gold recoveries from low-cost open-pit heap leach mining.


This article was developed in collaboration with Marmota, 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.