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Collecting Spectacular Agates from Mexico

Updated on March 25, 2016

As more and more areas in the United States are being closed to collecting or mining, the cost of many agates in the U.S. have increased.

Some of the agates that were once plentiful are now no longer available due to legislation or simply having the mines played out.

Fortunately there are some wonderful old agates as well as some new discoveries being offered from Mexico.

The following describes some of the old time favorites and a few new agates that you can collect online or in gem shows today.

Laguna Agate from Chihuahua Mexico
Laguna Agate from Chihuahua Mexico | Source

Laguna Agate

Laguna Agate is a must for any serious agate collector. Originating in Ojo Laguna, Mexico, Laguna Agate often has wonderful bright colors as well as very well pronounced fortification.

Fortification refers to the bands or rings that form in some agate that resemble the walls of a fort or castle.

Due to the popularity of this beautiful agate it can be quite expensive for high quality half nodules.

Coyamito Agate

Coyamito Agate comes from a location that is less than 50 miles away from the location where Laguna Agate is found.

Much of the agate is similar in appearance to Laguna Agate or other agates from nearby locations.

Coyamito Agate is known for having pseudomorphs (mineral crystals that have been replaced by agate) that occasionally form within the nodules.

Mexican Crazy Lace Agate

Originating in the Sierra Santa Lucia mountain range, Mexican Crazy Lace Agate has, as it's name would imply, has wonderful lacy patterns that are found throughout the agate.

It is often brightly colored in orange, red, white, yellow, grey and sometimes blue.

This very popular old time favorite is sometimes faked by dying banded agates however it is easy for anyone familiar with Mexican Crazy Lace Agate to see the difference due to the unique fine intricate patterns associated with Mexican Crazy Lace Agate.

Agua Nueva Agate

This wonderful agate is mined a few miles north of Chihuahua City in Mexico. It has fantastic lacy patterns of purple, pink, gold, white and other colors.

This unique and beautiful agate is highly sought after by collectors.

Moctezuma Agate

No longer mined, Moctezuma Agate is known for it's fine pastel colors, Moctezuma Agate is found 15 miles east of Estacion Moctezuma. Large fracture free examples of Moctezuma Agate is very rare since Moctezuma agate is typically small.

Bird of Paradise Plume Agate

Bird of Paradise Plume Agate originated from Chihuahua, Mexico. This highly collectible agate is quite scarce as it is thought to have been completely mined out many years ago.

This form of Mexican Flame Agate makes wonderful looking cabochons for use in unique jewelry.

Apache Plume Agate

Apache Plume Agate is found near the small town of El Apache in Chihuahua, Mexico.

This nicely banded agate is known for the it's bright red-orange colors floating in clear agate.

Apache Plume Agate is quite different from most of the other agates found in Chihuahua Mexico.

Crown of Silver Psilomelane Plume Agate

This interesting type of manganese ore comes from the Silver Crown Mine in Chihuahua, Mexico. It is black in color with shiny metallic silver banding swirling throughout the gemstone.

it is a very hard material and it takes a nice high polish. This is a fabulous looking material once it is cut into cabochons for jewelry.

Sangria Lace Agate

One of the newest agates from Mexico found on the market today is Sangria Lace Agate.

This agate is usually colored with light pinks and grays with bands of white and pockets of druzy.

This unique agate has already become very popular among collectors.

Royal Aztec Lace Agate

This absolutely fabulous seam agate from Durango, Mexico has always been difficult to obtain.

With fine lace patterns and soft pastel shades of purples and blues it is a favorite among agate collectors.

Long exposure to direct sunlight will cause the beautiful colors of this agate to fade.

Amethyst Lace Agate

This wonderful agate from Durango, Mexico has bands of white, pink, blueish gray, and lavender along with bands of purple Amethyst.

Fractures are common in this material and it's difficult to find large slabs that don't have cracks in them.

Sarape Agate

Named after the brightly colored Mexican Sarape Blanket, this agate is another new find in Chihuahua, Mexico.

Sarape Agate has many different colors including reds, greens, orange, yellow, brown and gray.

The patterns in this agate also varies greatly however it is most often swirling layers of different colors.

Do you collect agates from Mexico?

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Fire Agate

Fire Agate can be found only in the Southwestern United States and Northern Mexico. This wonderful gemstone was created when hot water from volcanic activity filled cracks and voids in rocks.

This hot water was saturated with silica and iron oxide and, as it cooled, beautiful layers of agate were formed.

These layers of agate often have the appearance of Opal or Mother of Pearl. This affect is known as the Schiller effect. The color produced by Fire Agate is created by very thin layers of crystal that reflect light in a special way to cause the colorful effect.

Because this is a very hard and stable gemstone it is great for use in jewelry and is a good substitute for more delicate gemstones such as Opal.

Other Mexico Agates

Below is a list of other agates from Mexico that would be of interest to a collector of Mexican agates.

  • Chihuahua Sagenite Agate
  • Colonia Enriquez Sagenite Agate
  • Mexican Flame Agate
  • Sonora Plume Agate
  • Riviera Plume Agate
  • Calandria Agate
  • Loma Pinta Agate
  • Luna Moon Agate
  • Cathedral Agate


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