G10 Pyropes Recovered From Float Detailed Sampling Outlines Areas of Interest


Shear Minerals Ltd. (SRM:TSXV), Stornoway Diamond Corporation. (SWY:TSX) and BHP Billiton Diamonds Inc. (BHP Billiton) today announced the discovery of G10 pyrope garnets and diamond inclusion chemistry chromites from a high interest kimberlite float sample recovered from the Josephine River G10 Corridor in the last two weeks of the 2005 field season.

Preliminary work on kimberlite float sample 05FWR006 (see September 12, 2005 news release) has confirmed the presence of G10 pyrope garnets with up to 11% Cr2O3 and high chrome chromites (up to 65 wt % Cr2O3). Initial visual textures from this float show more than 50% olivine macrocrysts and abundant purple garnets exhibiting kelyphytic rims. None of the kimberlites drilled to date have displayed the textures seen in this small piece of relatively non-magnetic float suggesting that this may represent a high interest kimberlitic source not yet drilled on the property. Additional physical property testing and petrographic analysis will be performed on this rock to best model a source.

In 2005, a total of 1,877 till samples were collected on the Churchill Property in order to infill the sampling density in the core areas of the property and to better define the indicator mineral trains and the up ice cut off. Since 2000, more than 7,100 surface samples have been collected from the property and all have been processed with more than 55,000 microprobe analysis. This sampling continues to refine the source areas of interest for future drilling.

A recent report for Shear by Mineral Services Canada Inc. used advanced indicator mineral composition techniques to filter the Churchill Diamond Project database. The results were incorporated in the selection of 2005 drill targets, and detailed sampling plans. Mineral Services states that "a striking discovery is the fact that the known kimberlites discovered in the last two years did not explain the pyropes in till samples. The unexplained till garnets, which include most G10's recovered to date, are very likely derived from a colder, high interest geotherm (37mW/m2) than garnets in the known kimberlites." Mineral Services identified 16 targeted areas that host high interest garnet populations with above average counts that indicate that source is likely nearby. The area in which KD900 is located lies immediately up ice of two such areas identified by Mineral Services. The Mineral Services study also concluded that certain indicator mineral dispersions at Churchill are narrow and also of limited length (less than 3km).

In summer 2005 a dense sampling grid was completed within the Sedna Corridor. Preliminary results have shown increased total counts of pyropes indicating closer proximity to source. For example one sample (05RMT252) had anomalous pyrope counts (>60) and is located up ice of two 2004 anomalous samples containing 19 and 24 pyropes respectively. Increasing detail will enable the targeting of subtle geophysical targets within these areas for the 2006 drill program.  

Diamond results have been received from four remaining kimberlites drilled in 2005. One diamond (on the 0.15mm sieve) was recently recovered from each of two new kimberlite core samples: a 62.1 kg sample from KD485 and a 23.9kg sample from KD481. Also, no diamonds were recovered from KD501 (96.4kg sample), the additional drill core from an 82.7 kg sample from KD900and 16.2 kg sample from KD209 and a 106.7 kg sample from the outcrop FF119. All samples were analysed for micro diamond analysis using caustic fusion at the ISO/IEC 17025 accredited Saskatchewan Research Council Geoanalytical Laboratories is Saskatoon, SK. Additional results from KD501 and the larger sample from KD5845 outcrop will be reported as they become available.

The Churchill Diamond Project is comprised of mineral rights to more than 9 million acres located near the community of Rankin Inlet and Chesterfield Inlet in the Kivalliq region of Nunavut. The project is owned by joint venture partners Shear, which has a 51% interest and is the operator, Stornoway (35%) and BHP Billiton (14%). To date Shear and its partners have drilled 41 kimberlites over a wide area on the Churchill and Churchill West projects. The 2005 field program is under the supervision of Jennifer Burgess, P. Geol., a Qualified Person under NI 43-101.

On behalf of the Board
/s/ "Eira Thomas"
Eira Thomas