Gold nuggets are believed to have been eroded from gold containing reefs. This view has changed over the years due to the number of nuggets that are found near the surface. Now people believe that nuggets are a result of gold precipitated from chemical weathering of diffused gold deposits found deep in the earth. All nuggets that have been found resting on the surface would have been found or are yet to be detected.
In Australia, most of the gold nuggets are found in Victoria or in Western Australia. Gold nuggets gave been found in these parts since the 1800s and whilst the rush of small scale prospectors has scaled down, there are still son nuggets that have been found by ordinary folk to this day. According to the Prospectors and Miners Association of Victoria (PMAV) the value of gold that has been reported since 1998 is about $4,311,490 which means an average of 1,724 ounces of gold nuggets are found each year. However, a number of prospectors have reported a reduction in the number of nuggets found. The numbers offered by APLA are based on estimated by Australia’s manufacturer of metal detectors, Minelab. According to Minelab, there is a likelihood that about a ton of gold is found every year by small-scale miners.
The Perth Mint reports that it gets about 1,500 ounces of gold nuggets every year for melting and refining. When it comes to selling gold nuggets, Australia has a large number of nugget dealers but the Mint is believed to be the largest dealer. It not only buys nuggets from the general public but processes nuggets from other gold buyers. In 1999, the mint tried to increase its stock of gold nuggets by offering $22 per grams for nuggets weighing between 6 and 12 grams. At the time, APLS warned that the mint would not be able to sustain the offer because there would be many people coming up to sell nuggets to the mint however in six months the mint was able to increase its nugget holding by about 800 nuggets or 225 ounces. This proved that there were no prospectors with big stashes of nuggets waiting on a good price to sell. Even if we had to discount hoarding and black market activity, there was still little evidence that there could have been even a ton of nuggets to sell.
There are other countries where nuggets have been found. Most people look to Australia because there have been so many nuggets found and the quality of nuggets found in Victoria and Western Australia has been significant. Australian nuggets are famous for being the largest in the world. Since the gold rush, there has been a record number of really large nuggets found in Australia than in the rest of the world. Unfortunately, most of these nuggets were melted down.
For the majority of people who still prospect for gold and find nuggets, the amount and the sizes aren’t that significant but there are some that do make some lucky finds. They do have problems with knowing the best places to sell their gold nuggets to get a good price. Selling gold nuggets in Australia is relatively easy. There are a number of different options that are available. You can find a gold buyer that will buy your gold nuggets virtually in every major Australian city.