Dia Bras Exploration Approves its Largest Exploration Budget Programme at the Yauricocha Mine in Peru

TORONTO, ONTARIO–(Marketwire – Feb. 8, 2012) –  Dia Bras Exploration Inc. (TSX VENTURE:DIB) ("Dia Bras") (the "Company") is pleased to announce its expanded 2012 exploration programme at the Yauricocha mine in Peru. The exploration programme is designed to expand known deposits and discover additional deposits, most of which highlight the strong precious metals potential of the Yauricocha mine and surrounding area. This programme will consist of approximately 15,000 metres of drilling, and extensive exploration work including channel and surface sampling, drifting, mapping, metallurgical testing and other exploration activities. The estimated budget for Yauricocha's 2012 exploration activities represents a 217% increase versus last year and is the largest exploration budget in the history of the mine. The Yauricocha property covers 18,685 hectares that straddle a 20-km strike length of the prolific Yauricocha fault, which is a major ore controlling structure in this area of western central Peru.

Besides the exploration on the Company's current producing mines, eight priority areas (described in more detail below) have been identified by the mine's geological staff for expanded exploration, and are: 1) Purisima (gold-silver); 2) Adrico (gold); 3) Victoria (silver-copper); 4) San Juan (polymetallic); 5) Ipillo (silver-zinc); 6) Éxito Sur (polymetallic); 7) Yauricocha fault extension (polymetallic); and, 8) Carmencita (silver-lead). The target types include copper-silver veins; breccia-hosted gold; stratabound disseminated gold; lead-silver oxide; and, polymetallic veins, breccias, and replacement deposits. This will be a multi-track programme aimed at continuously replacing mined reserves and expanding reserves at this historic mine. It is important to mention that most of these areas have been previously mined by Centromin and Cerro Pasco Corporation and also have been in production in the past, leaving us with very valuable information.

"We are very excited about the exploration potential within the Yauricocha property," stated Daniel Tellechea, President & CEO of Dia Bras Exploration, "and we are planning to invest a significant amount of money to discover new deposits as well as expand our known deposits. This mine has been in production for almost a century and continues to be a highly profitable and well-run operation. Production has been expanded over the past several years and no limit to mineralization has been found at depth in its main ore bodies. We are now stepping out to unexplored areas that have similar geologic and structural settings as well as old historical mines and deposits, which we believe will substantially add reserves and resources to our current deposit in the near future."

2011 Exploration Summary

From September – December 2011, the Company completed 9,071 metres of drilling at the Yauricocha Mine at a total cost of US$1,100,000. A total of 4,453 metres was drilled at the Central Mine Area to upgrade resources to reserves at an approximate cost of US$500,000. In addition, 4,618 metres were drilled to explore the ore bodies to depth to increase the amount of resources below the current mining levels, at a cost of US$600,000.

The results are being compiled and will be released shortly.

2012 Exploration Activities

Drilling at the Central Mine Area in 2012 will be focused on upgrading resources to reserves, especially in the Catas and Cuye ore bodies.

Two other areas have been selected for early-stage exploration. These are Yananachay and Silacocha zones where granodiorite intrusions cut the Jumasha limestone, a very important geologic setting for mineralization in the Central Mine Area.

Figure 1: Yauricocha Property Map is available at the following address: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/Figure1_DiaBras.pdf

Central Mine Area

The Company is conducting a detailed drilling programme on the Cuye and Catas ore bodies that will assist the development of a mine plan for deeper levels of these ore bodies, which will allow further conversion of resources into reserves. Additionally, the Company has a diamond drilling programme totaling an estimated 9,000 – 9,500 m. The holes will be drilled to the maximum depth possible, given the available drill stations. The tables below show the planned programme:

Drilling Programme to Convert Resources to Reserves
Deposit Number of Holes Length (m)
Mascota 8 784.0
Cuye 11 1,364.7
Antacaca 11 1,075.2
Catas 3-South 9 1,229.0
Total 39 4,452.9
Drilling Programme to Explore Catas and Cuye to Depth
Deposit Number of Holes Length (m)
Catas 3 South 9 1,090.0
Catas 11 3,529.0
Total 20 4,619.0

The Company plans to update its NI 43-101 report of May 25, 2011 during the second quarter of this year.

Near-Mine Target Areas

The target areas are listed below in order of priority, although the priority sequence may change as new data is compiled, interpreted and added to the mine's database. Such deposits are within 10 km from the main mine.

  1. Purisima: This area is underlain by lutite and hosts an outcropping silicified, stratabound disseminated deposit. The deposit has been mapped over an area of 250 m x 15 m and extends under cover. Centromin drilled the deposit during 1986-1987; the deepest hole, only 30 metres deep, bottomed in mineralization and averaged 2.17 g/t gold ("Au") and 17.7 g/t silver ("Ag") over the 30 m. The target here is an open-pitable gold deposit averaging an estimated 2-3 g/t Au and 16-18 g/t Ag.

    Pending positive metallurgical test results, the Company plans on completing 1,000 metres of drilling in five holes at an estimated cost of US$120,000.

  2. Adrico: This area lies within the Victoria target area but outside the veined area. Mineralized breccias hosted by granodiorite contain pyrite, and surface rock-chip sampling has yielded gold contents up to 15.0 g/t, with an average grade of 2.16 g/t Au.
  3. Victoria: This area is underlain by granodiorite that hosts copper-silver veins in E-W trending faults near the operating mine and the veins are similar to the Cuye ore body of the central mine area. The Cuye ore body produced 1.2 million tonnes of ore at average grades of 2.5% copper ("Cu") and 90.6 g/t Ag, mined by Centromin and others, but the body has an additional 100,000 tonnes in reserve, and is open laterally and to depth. Yauricocha will commence exploration and mining of this ore body during 2012.

    The Victoria vein was mined during 1969-1976 and 1994-1996 by Centromin, but only to a shallow depth, and it produced 23,807 tonnes averaging 81 g/t Ag, 0.43% lead ("Pb"), 2.04% Cu and 0.65% zinc ("Zn"). The vein is open to depth and along strike.

    Due to the close proximity of the Victoria and Adrico targets, their combined programme comprises 2,200 metres of diamond drilling that will be conducted during the fourth quarter of 2012, at a budgeted cost of US$240,000.

  4. San Juan: This area is underlain by a sequence of calcareous red lutites, pure limestones and reddish arenaceous limestone that hosts breccias containing polymetallic mineralization. It is located about 2 km NE of the Victoria-Adrico target and the Company plans on conducting exploration work this year once it has obtained the required permits from the local community.
  5. Carmencita: This area is underlain by limestone that hosts chimney-type, lead-oxide mineralization. The Company plans on conducting exploration activities at Carmencita pending permits from the local community.

Regional Target Areas

The target areas listed below are farther from the central mine area but are considered to be excellent caliber exploration targets. The areas are shown on the attached map.

  1. Ipillo: This area hosts polymetallic veins within an intrusive granodiorite. During 1991-1997, Centromin mined the Poggi 1 vein and produced 70,786 tonnes of ore at average grades of 97 g/t Ag, 2.28% Pb, 0.53% Cu and 5.89% Zn. Abundant veins and veinlets occur over an area of 2 kmand stockworks of veins occur in large portions of the veined area. The potential for open-pitable stockwork deposits as well as vein-hosted deposits is considered to be high by the mine's staff.

    The Company will start drilling during in the third quarter of 2012 and the programme will comprise 1,000 metres of diamond drilling at a budgeted cost of $US120,000.

  2. Éxito Sur: This area is at the contact between the Jumasha limestone and an intrusive granodiorite, the setting where many of the mine's deposits occur. Éxito Sur lies 1 km south of the inactive Éxito mine, where Centromin produced 258,634 tonnes averaging 63 g/t Ag, 2.87% Pb, 0.13% Cu and 9.73% Zn between mid-1991 to 1998. Subsequently, Minera Corona produced 277,244 tonnes averaging 63 g/t Ag, 2.14% Pb, 0.18% Cu and 12.06% Zn from 2004-2008.

    At Éxito Sur, extensive manganese mineralization occurs on the surface that has been explored by drifting and drilling only to shallow depths. The manganese mineralization is inferred to indicate massive polymetallic mineralization at depth. The current programme will include deeper holes to test this concept.

    A combination of contract geologists and mine staff geologists is planned. The programme will consist of geologic mapping, rock chip sampling and analysis of remote sensing data followed by diamond drilling. The combined budget for this area is US$631,000 that will be expended over several months.

  3. Yauricocha Fault: This fault is a major regional fault that trends NNW-SSE for tens of kilometers and is a major ore-controlling fault in the Yauricocha mine. Exploration along the fault to the southeast of the mine is designed to test this portion of the fault for additional deposits. The primary targets are dilational areas along the fault, similar to the mineralized areas in the Central Mine Area. The programme for this year will consist of low-cost geologic mapping and sampling.

Early Stage Areas

With the emphasis on exploration of the Yauricocha property, directed by Dia Bras, the Minera Corona staff has selected two additional areas with no prior exploration work, but ancient workings are known. Based on model concepts and experience from mining over decades in the Central Mine area, the staff believes that the Yanamachay and Silacocha have a very strong mineral potential. The targets are replacement polymetallic mineralization at the contacts of granodiorite with limestone of the Jumasha Formation and intercalated limestone, arenites and lutites of the Oyon/Chimu Formation.

Exploration of these two areas is planned for 2012 with a budget of US$320,000 that will include basic geologic mapping and sampling.

Quality Assurance

The quality assurance-quality control (QA-QC) programme employed by Dia Bras has been described in detail in the NI 43-101 report on Yauricocha of May 25, 2011, prepared by Gustavson Associates of Denver, which is available for review on SEDAR.

The technical content of this news release has been approved by Thomas L. Robyn, Ph.D., CPG, RPG, a Qualified Person as defined in NI 43-101 and Head of Exploration for Dia Bras Exploration, Inc.

About Dia Bras

Dia Bras Exploration is a Canadian exploration & mining company focused on precious and base metals in Chihuahua State, other areas of northern Mexico, and most recently at its Yauricocha silver-lead-zinc-copper-gold mine in Peru. The Company is accelerating exploration at the Yauricocha property as well as pursuing the development and exploration of its most advanced Mexican assets – the Bolivar Property (copper-zinc-silver) and the Cusi Property (silver-lead) and is exploring in Mexico several precious metal targets such as La Sidra gold project at the Bolivar Property, Las Coloradas silver project at Melchor Ocampo (Zacatecas State), the Bacerac silver project (Sonora State), and the La Verde gold project at the Batopilas Property (Chihuahua State). Dia Bras is also exploring base metal projects in Mexico such as the Corralitos intrusion-hosted molybdenum deposit (Chihuahua State).

Forward-looking Statements

Except for statements of historical fact, all statements in this news release without limitation regarding new projects, acquisitions, future plans and objectives are forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be accurate; actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements.

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this news release.


Contact Information

    Daniel Tellechea
    President & CEO
    Dia Bras Exploration Inc.
    1 (866) 493-9646

    Matt Morrish
    Director, Investor Relations
    Dia Bras Exploration Inc.
    1 (866) 493-9646