Jean Lafleur and Keith Minty´s Aurvista Gold Corp. (AVA), down 2.5 cents to 31 cents on 3.42 million shares, has concluded metallurgical testing of rock from its Douay gold project in the Abitibi region of Quebec. The company processed 10 samples, which weighed a total of 311 kilograms and graded 1.89 grams of gold per tonne, and it recovered 92 per cent of the gold, 26 per cent through gravity and an additional 66 per cent through flotation. Mr. Lafleur, president and chief executive officer, says he was "pleased and encouraged" since the recoveries Aurvista managed are in line with those obtained elsewhere along the Abitibi gold belt. He says that more drilling and metallurgical testing are planned near the end of the year, adding that he is confident the recovery process will continue to improve.
Aurvista declared a 4.4-million-ounce resource late in February, but the regulators prompted a quick recalculation two weeks later. The company now lists 83.3 million tonnes inferred at 1.06 grams per tonne, or 2.8 million ounces, that lies within a hypothetical open pit design. (The missing 1.6 million ounces are still there, but they are beyond the limits of the pit and are currently deemed uneconomic.) Mr. Lafleur is not abandoning that gold, he says the current resource is just an "early stage glimpse" and another 30,000 metres of exploration drilling this year should allow Aurvista to expand its pit shell. Most of those 1.6 million ounces occur at depth, so finding more gold laterally as well would improve the economics for a larger and therefore deeper pit.