May 20, 2010
Peregrine Diamonds Ltd. (“Peregrine” or “the Company”) (TSX:PGD) is
pleased to report the discovery of the CH-17 kimberlite on the Chidliak
project (“Chidliak”) on Baffin Island, Nunavut, Canada. The discovery
of CH-17, 35 kilometres north of the nearest known kimberlites, CH-6 and
CH-10, is further confirmation that Chidliak is a highly prospective
and large Canadian diamond district. Formerly geophysical anomaly 166,
CH-17 is the northernmost of two high-priority magnetic anomalies, 165
and 166, that have similar geophysical characteristics and are situated
200 metres apart under the same lake. Each of the anomalies has
estimated surface expressions of at least one hectare. With this
discovery, Peregrine management is confident that anomaly 165 is likely
also a kimberlite.
The CH-17 drill core was described in the field as being macrocrystic
olivine-rich kimberlite, containing country rock and mantle xenoliths,
and abundant kimberlite indicator minerals. Pyrope garnet and chrome
diopside grains up to 30 and 15 mm in size, respectively, were observed.
The CH-17 kimberlite is the first target drilled this year and the
seventeenth kimberlite discovered at Chidliak since 2008. The discovery
was made by drilling a vertical core hole from lake-ice into the centre
of the high-priority magnetic anomaly and kimberlite was intersected
underneath 41 metres of water and 2.5 metres of overburden. Three
metres of kimberlite drill core was recovered before the hole was
terminated due to drilling difficulties. A map showing CH-17 and the
adjacent anomaly 165, and photographs of drill core, are available here
A second hole was not immediately attempted at CH-17 to allow for a
thorough review and analysis of the drilling issues by Peregrine and the
drilling contractor. While awaiting delivery of drill supplies, a
geophysical anomaly 1.6 kilometres north of CH-17 was drilled because of
its proximity to a favourable kimberlitic indicator mineral train. No
kimberlite was intersected and the anomaly was explained by magnetic
gabbro. The indicator mineral train is now interpreted as having likely
originated from CH-17 and anomaly 165.
Since the CH-17 discovery hole was terminated on May 3, there have been
ten days where weather did not allow access to the drill because of low
visibility and/or high winds and blowing snow. In addition,
unseasonably warm local weather has led to the formation of slush on the
lake hosting CH-17 and anomaly 165. Both CH-17 and anomaly 165 cannot
be efficiently drilled from the lake shore. For safety reasons, after a
comprehensive analysis by an independent ice engineer, Peregrine has
decided to postpone further drilling on the lake-ice at this particular
locality until the spring of 2011. The drill is currently being moved
to test two additional lake-based targets, anomalies 290 and 291 (see
map at link noted above), that have more favourable lake-ice drilling
conditions, and drilling is likely to commence in the next few days. Up
to 30 land-based kimberlite targets are expected to be drilled this
year during the spring and summer programmes at Chidliak.
As announced on November 24, 2008, BHP Billiton has exercised its
earn-in rights for Chidliak. Under the terms of the earn-in agreement,
BHP Billiton must incur a total of $22.3 million in exploration
expenditures in order to earn a 51 percent interest in Chidliak. BHP
Billiton sole-funded a $9.2 million exploration programme in 2009. A
$13.9 million programme, recently increased from $13.5 million to allow
for 6,000 additional line kilometres of airborne geophysics, has been
approved for 2010.
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 programs carried out by the Company at Chidliak. Mr.
Holmes has reviewed this release and approves of its contents.
For further information, please contact Mr. Eric Friedland, CEO, Mr.
Brooke Clements, President, Mr. Mike Westerlund, Vice President,
Investor Relations and Corporate Communications or Peregrine Diamonds
Investor Relations, at 604-408-8880 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
Forward-Looking Statements: This news release contains
forward-looking statements. All statements, other than statem