While there’s always a dinosaur coin series (or two) in progress at any one time, it’s extremely rare to see coins featuring life that existed after their extinction some 65 million years ago. That’s a shame, as there are some incredible animals over the period. An especially fascinating time was the Pleistocene, an era which saw large megafauna related to modern species, that interacted with many of our own forebears, back to the Neanderthals.
German dealer Auragentum launched a bullion coin series in 2019 that is showcasing eight of these large beasts. Struck for them by German mint, Leipziger Edelmetallverarbeitung, two coins are issued every year, and at the time of writing there have been five issues, across three different formats.
The most popular coin is, as always, the one ounce 0.999 silver coin. This has a mintage per design of just 15,000 pieces and a brilliant uncirculated finish. Also sharing that finish and metal is the appropriately huge one-kilo variant. These are considerably rarer at 1,000 pieces, but that’s still a healthy number for the size of coin. Lastly, and in a proof finish, is a one ounce 0.9999 gold version. This also has a 1,000 mintage, and it comes boxed with a Certificate of Authenticity.
Each issue has a similar design, of course, depicting the animal in its habitat, surrounded by a border over which parts of the animal overlap. The series title, composition and date are all inscribed on the reverse face. ENgraved here on the bigger silver coin, and the gold, is the coin serial number. In a nice touch, the border also holds eight silhouette pictograms that represent the series subjects. The obverse is simply the coat of arms of the African state, the Republic of Ghana.
A pretty cool series, and one that’s quite unique in the bullion market. Indeed, even the numismatic market is mostly devoid of coins with this subject, and that’s a shame. Six issues available now, with the final two in 2022.