Peregrine Diamonds Ltd.
TSX : PGD

Peregrine Diamonds Ltd.

February 15, 2011 08:20 ET

Peregrine Announces 2011 Diamond and Metals Exploration Programmes for Qilaq and Cumberland and Confirms Precious and Base Metal Anomalies

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Feb. 15, 2011) - Peregrine Diamonds Ltd. ("Peregrine" or "the Company") (TSX:PGD) is pleased to announce 2011 plans for its 100%-owned Qilaq and Cumberland projects ("Qilaq" and "Cumberland" respectively) located on Baffin Island, Nunavut, Canada. At Qilaq, the Company discovered two diamondiferous kimberlites in 2010 very early in the exploration cycle for the project. This early success has prompted Peregrine to plan a programme of airborne geophysics, drilling, follow-up till sampling and prospecting for 2011. Qilaq also has strong metals potential, and at least five promising gold or base metal targets will be followed-up in 2011. At Cumberland, 35 promising gold and base metal anomalies that were discovered in 2010 will be the subject of follow-up sampling and prospecting in 2011.

Qilaq and Cumberland are located at the south end of Baffin Island in the same region as the Chidliak project ("Chidliak"), operated by Peregrine, where 50 kimberlites have been discovered to date by the Chidliak Joint Venture, with at least seven of those having characteristics consistent with economic potential in Arctic settings. Qilaq and Cumberland are 100 percent-owned by Peregrine and are not encumbered by any third party earn-in or back-in rights except for a one kilometre buffer zone at Qilaq along the boundary of Chidliak that is part of the Chidliak Joint Venture area of interest. The two kimberlites at Qilaq are outside of this buffer zone. The diamond and metals discoveries at Chidliak, Qilaq and Cumberland illustrate the potential for world class discoveries on Baffin Island and in other areas of Nunavut which are underexplored relative to other regions of Canada.

QILAQ

Background

Qilaq is 4,370 square kilometres in size, and borders Chidliak to the north, east and south. In 2010, 387 sediment samples were collected for kimberlite indicator mineral ("KIM") processing, 476 sediment and 120 rock samples were collected for multi-element geochemistry and a 670 line-kilometre helicopter-borne electromagnetic/magnetic geophysical survey was flown. As reported on October 6, 2010, two diamondiferous kimberlites were discovered at surface in the northeastern portion of Qilaq, Q1 and Q2. The results from Q2 were especially encouraging with a 242 kg sample yielding 253 diamonds larger than the 0.106 mm sieve size including three stones larger than the 0.600 mm sieve size. In August and September 2010, a follow-up prospecting, mapping and sampling programme was conducted to evaluate 23 sites with anomalous orogenic gold or magmatic nickel-copper-cobalt-platinum group element signatures.

Of particular interest is successful metals follow-up work related to a site where a 2009 till sample contained 350 gold grains, with 80 percent of those grains described by the Overburden Drilling Management laboratory, responsible for processing the samples, as being "pristine", suggesting they have been transported only a short distance. A rock sample collected less than 50 metres north of this site returned 0.58 grams per tonne gold and an altered rock sample associated with a gossan approximately three kilometres to the north returned 3.1 grams per tonne silver and 112 ppb palladium. Three soil samples in this area returned the following values: (1) 183 ppb gold, 2,196 ppb silver and 2.47 ppm tellurium, (2) 7,079 ppb silver and 162 ppb palladium, and (3) 3,046 ppb silver and 123 ppb palladium. In another target area, a till sample collected in 2009 returned 45 gold grains, 40 grains of sperrylite (a platinum mineral, PtAs2) and 2,060 grains of hercynite (an iron spinel). Eleven of the gold grains were classified as pristine. Additionally, the till geochemistry from a soil sample collected in 2010 one kilometre from the till sample with the sperrylite and gold grains returned 91 ppb palladium.

2011 Programme

The 2011 Qilaq exploration programme will begin in the spring with a 4,000 line kilometre airborne geophysical survey centred on two areas defined by anomalous KIM samples, one of which hosts the Q1 and Q2 kimberlites. The airborne survey will be followed by ground geophysical surveying, KIM sampling and a drill programme that will focus on the drilling of the Q1 and Q2 kimberlites as well as any new priority kimberlite targets generated from the geophysical surveys. The KIM sampling will be conducted within the areas targeted for airborne geophysics as well as within other anomalous areas that were confirmed in 2010.

At least five metals anomalies identified in 2009 and confirmed in 2010 will be targeted for follow-up work in the summer of 2011. The follow-up work will include detailed prospecting, mapping and rock and sediment sampling.

The estimated 2011 budget for Qilaq is $500,000 to $1,000,000.

CUMBERLAND

Background

Cumberland is 5,270 square kilometres in size and is located approximately 250 kilometres north of Iqaluit and just east of the community of Pangnirtung.

During July and August, 2010, Peregrine collected 341 samples under a reconnaissance sediment sampling programme to evaluate Cumberland's diamond and metals potential. No KIMs were recovered from these samples, but 35 sites returned anomalous concentrations of metamorphic or magmatic sulphide indicator minerals and/or anomalous geochemical signatures. Of the 35 sites, 16 are classified as nickel-copper-cobalt-platinum group element targets and 19 are gold targets.

A sulphide-rich boulder sample collected from an area with extensive gossan development returned 4.1 g/t silver, 0.3% zinc and 603 ppm copper. A drainage sample collected 10 metres upstream from the boulder had high counts of sulphide minerals, including chalcopyrite (150 grains), pyrite (5,000 grains) and arsenopyrite/loellingite (16 grains). The geochemical sample collected from the same drainage sample site returned 3,238 ppb silver, 517 ppm copper and 64 ppb palladium.

Another promising target at Cumberland was defined by a till sample with anomalous counts of sperrylite (~100 grains), hercynite (50 grains), pyrite (~2,000 grains) and nine grains of chalcopyrite. The geochemical sample at this site returned 1,732 ppm copper and 1,163 ppm nickel.

2011 Programme

The 2011 programme at Cumberland will consist of follow-up prospecting, mapping and soil and rock sampling focussed on the promising target areas identified in 2010. The estimated budget for 2011 is $300,000.

An updated map showing the location of the Company's projects on Baffin Island and photographs from the Qilaq and Cumberland programmes are available at the following link www.pdiam.com/i/pdf/Qilaq&Cumberland331.pdf.

All of the sediment samples collected at Qilaq and Cumberland that were analyzed for KIMs and metals indicator minerals were sent to Overburden Drilling Management in Nepean, Ontario. Electron microprobe analyses of the KIMs recovered from Qilaq were performed by CF Minerals Research Ltd. in Kelowna, British Columbia. Geochemical analyses of sediment and rock samples were completed by ACME Analytical Laboratories Ltd. in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Mr. Peter Holmes, P. Geo., Peregrine's Vice President, Exploration, is a Qualified Person under NI 43-101 and is responsible for the design and conduct of the exploration programmes carried out by the Company at Qilaq and Cumberland. Mr. Holmes has reviewed this news release and approves of its contents. 

Forward-Looking Statements: This news release contains forward-looking statements. All statements, other than statements of historical fact, that address activities, events or developments that the Company believes, expects or anticipates will or may occur in the future (including, without limitation, statements relating to the proposed exploration program, funding availability, anticipated exploration results, resource estimates, and future exploration and operating plans) are forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements reflect the current expectations or beliefs of the Company based on information currently available to the Company. Forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties that may cause the actual results of the Company to differ materially from those discussed in the forward-looking statements and, even if such actual results are realized or substantially realized, there can be no assurance that they will have the expected consequences to, or effects on, the Company. Factors that could cause actual results or events to differ materially from current expectations include, among other things, uncertainties relating to the availability and cost of funds, timing and content of work programs, results of exploration activities, interpretation of drilling results and other geological data, world diamond markets, future diamond prices, reliability of mineral property titles, changes to regulations affecting the Company's activities, delays in obtaining or failure to obtain required project approvals, operational and infrastructure risks, and other risks involved in the diamond exploration business. Any forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date on which it is made and, except as may be required by applicable securities laws, the Company disclaims any intent or obligation to update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or results or otherwise. Although the Company believes that the assumptions inherent in the forward-looking statements are reasonable, forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and accordingly undue reliance should not be put on such statements due to their inherent uncertainty.

Contact Information

  • Peregrine Diamonds Ltd.
    Mr. Eric Friedland, CEO
    604-408-8880
    or
    Peregrine Diamonds Ltd.
    Mr. Brooke Clements, President
    604-408-8880
    or
    Peregrine Diamonds Ltd.
    Mr. Mike Westerlund, Vice President, Investor Relations
    and Corporate Communications
    604-408-8880
    604-408-8881 (FAX)
    investorrelations@pdiam.com
    www.pdiam.com