12 Pound Gold Nugget Found by Lucky Prospector

| by Michael Allen

A gold nugget with an estimated value of more than $300,000 has been found near Ballarat, Australia in Victoria's goldfields (video below).

An amateur prospector, who wishes to remain anonymous, found the nugget weighing 177 ounces with a Minelab GPX 5000 metal detector (costing $6,000) with an Advantage Plus Sadie mono coil and a Rooster Booster audio enhancer, reports ABC News.

Cordell Kent, who owns the Mining Exchange Gold Shop in Ballarat, said: "The sum total of my finds would be just over 100 ounces. We have 800 prospectors on our books and only a couple of those have ever found a nugget over 100 ounces. So there's only been one or two big pieces and they were found a long time ago."

Working on behalf of the lucky prospector, Kent is seeking a buyer for the gold nugget, which should get more than $300,000.

Kent said prospecting has become popular with gold valued at $1,600 per ounce: "A lot of people think Victoria's goldfields are dead and that there's none left, but he [the prospector] has worked in an area where a lot of people have worked in the past but he persisted and he's been rewarded. We are 162 years into the gold rush and it's never totally waned, it's just changed."