Canada captures the moment a Hadrosaur takes a first look at its new Cretaceous habitat

Obviously, with our well known love of palaeontology, there was no way we were missing this coin and as we’ve been a little slack on reporting Canadian coins of late, here it is – Dinosaurs. The Royal Canadian Mint has quite a decent history of releasing coins themed around prehistoric life, having issued several series to date, and even the glow-in-the-dark nature of this new coin isn’t a first of its type. It doesn’t prevent it being a neat coin, however.

The biggest plus this coin enjoys is its artist. Julius Csotonyi, well known in Palaeoart circles for his impressive body of work. For those unaware, Palaeoart is exactly what it sounds like – the artistic representation of prehistoric life, but with a basis in actual science. Of course there are lots of ridiculous images floating around, but the best palaeoartists have a solid grounding in the likely realities of ancient flora and fauna. Canadian Csotonyi is one of the best.

The image is of a young Hadrosaur, specifically the Hypacrosaurus, and depicts a hatchling breaking free of its 20 cm egg and looking at its world for the first time. This was a relatively common dinosaur of the North American region and grew from this relatively tiny state (just 1.7m long!), to adulthood much faster than a Tyrannosaur, for example, would have. As a herbivore, its best defence was size and this beastie managed to reach weights of  four tonnes and a length of over nine metres.

As we hinted at earlier, this is one of the RCM’s glow-in-the-dark coins, with the glowing image featuring the animals skeletal structure in place of the coloured original when the lights go out. It looks like it works very well and we can see this one being very popular, especially in Canada where dinosaurs are found in abundance in Alberta, compared to most other places. The obverse is a simple effigy of QEII, the countries own Susanna Blunt version, with an engraved patterned background field.

Packaging is the usual snapper coin box. These are of a decent quality, if lacking imagination. How much better would an egg-shaped latex floating frame have been? A serialised certifiate of authenticity is enclosed and the mintage has been capped at 4,000. At the time of writing these are already 80% gone, and it’s highly likely that it will be a sell out. An excellent example of the work of Julius Csotonyi, and of the Royal Canadian Mint. Available now for $139.95 CAD.

ARTGLOW

MINTS DESCRIPTION

There are few places in the world where dinosaur embryos have been discovered, but Canada is one of them. In 1987, eggshells found at Devil’s Coulee, in southern Alberta, led to the discovery of one of the largest dinosaur nesting sites in North America. There, palaeontologists from the Royal Tyrrell Museum unearthed the fossilized remains of Hypacrosaurus stebingeri nests, eggs, even embryos—a rare find for a species that roamed the land 75 million years ago.

A young duckbill dinosaur emerges into a new world—ours—on our latest prehistoric-themed offering. The fine silver coin is the perfect shape for a colourful depiction of a baby Hypacrosaurus breaking free from its egg against an engraved forest backdrop.

DESIGN: Designed by Julius T. Csotonyi, your coin has been reviewed for scientific accuracy by palaeontologists at the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology in Drumheller, Alberta. It features a coloured rendering of a young Hypacrosaurus stebingeri, as it may have appeared 75 million years ago. The hatchling emerges from its egg against an engraved prehistoric landscape of evergreens, conifers, shrubs and low plants. The Hypacrosaurus’ uniquely shaped beak is viewed in right side profile as the hatchling looks up; it does not yet have the bony crest that is a distinctive feature of the adult Hypacrosaurus. Glow-in-the-dark technology reveals fossilized remains that are based on those uncovered at Devil’s Coulee in southern Alberta.

OBVERSE: The Ian Rank-Broadley effigy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, the monetary denomination, and the 2018 year-date are shown on the coin’s obverse.

SPECIFICATION
DENOMINATION $20 Canadian
COMPOSITION 0.9999 silver
WEIGHT 31.82 grams
DIMENSIONS 31.82 mm
FINISH Proof
MODIFICATIONS Colour
MINTAGE 4,000
BOX / COA Yes / Yes
ROYAL CANADIAN MINT