Sunday, January 20, 2013
Prospector Strikes 5.5kg Gold Nugget in Ballarat, Victoria, Australia
A WHOPPING 5.5kg gold nugget worth up to $300,000 has been found in bush near Ballarat.
The "incredibly rare" nugget was found 60cm underground by a prospector, who wishes to remain anonymous, on Wednesday.
Ballarat Mining Exchange Gold Shop owner and dealer Cordell Kent said the prospector heard a faint noise on his detector and removed a dense pile of leaf mulch before he started digging.
"He thought he had detected the bonnet of a car when he saw a glint of gold," Mr Kent said.
"He cleaned the top of it and the gold kept expanding and expanding ... he saw more and more gold ... he couldn’t believe what he was seeing."
The nugget is worth about $282,000 in weight, but has an added premium because it is rare to find one over a kilogram, Mr Kent said.
"I have been a prospector and dealer for two decades, and cannot remember the last time a nugget over 100 ounces (2.8kg) has been found locally.
"It’s extremely significant as a mineral specimen. We are 162 years into a gold rush and Ballarat is still producing nuggets - it’s unheard of."