The latest Ocean Predators coin from Niue features the strange & mysterious Giant Squid
Ocean Predators was a series that first appeared back in 2012 when the New Zealand Mint (NZM) released a very popular coin adorned with a creature that’s never going to be anything but hugely popular, the Great White Shark. With very light colouring, it was a fine design made special by having bite marks struck right through the coin. Subsequent releases lost this innovative design feature and reverted to a standard coin format. Despite that, the two follow on releases featuring the Hammerhead Shark and the Great Barracuda remained excellent coins with some great artwork and a ‘just-enough’ level of colouring.
This fourth release carries on in that vein, but in our view steps up the design quality even more with a great level of detail in the strike and some nice interplay between the main image and the ‘porthole’ border. The obverse moves away from the NZM’s standard effigy of Queen Elizabeth II by integrating it with border patterns formed from squid tentacles, a nice touch that’s long overdue and something becoming increasingly common amongst mints looking to liven up the obligatory mugshot.
Packaged as usual in a very nice round display box, it also keeps the liquid-filled window, something not as cool as it sounds, but a decent touch regardless. Available to order now from the NZ Mint webstore or from the usual dealers, the list price is US$80.00. A great entrant in a fine series in my view, but I still miss the bite marks.
The Giant Squid remains a mystery to scientists despite being the largest invertebrate on Earth. This is due to its deep-sea habitat. Most Giant Squid will measure around 10 m (33 ft), and weigh approximately 200 kg (440 lb). Claims of specimen larger than 13 m (43 ft) have not been scientifically documented. Like other species, the Giant Squid has eight arms and two long tentacles, or clubs, that are used to bring food to their beak-like mouths. These are tipped with hundreds of sharp-toothed suckers and used like a net to capture prey.
Giant Squid have the largest eyes in the animal kingdom, measuring up to 25 cm (10 in) in diameter. These are used to aid hunting in the darkened depths of the ocean. To shift position, a Squid will draw water into its mantle before forcing it out behind, thereby propelling the animal forward. The tremendous size of the Squid leaves it with few predators. However, scientists have found beaks of Giant Squid, in the stomachs of Sperm Whales along with lacerations on their skin from battles held in the depths of the ocean.
DESIGN: Watch out for those massive tentacles reaching out and wrapping around this beautifully designed collectible coin with stunning splash water effect. The Ocean Predator – Giant Squid is the fourth release in this popular coin series.
The dramatic image of a Giant Squid is finely engraved on a 1 oz Silver Coin with tentacles out stretched to seize its prey, and set within a porthole border design. This beautifully designed coin is packaged in a cylindrical shaped water-filled coin case in keeping with the characteristics for this coin collection. When opened, the coin and Certificate of Authenticity are displayed. This coin has a limited mintage of 2,000 coins and is a must for coin collectors who want to add to their dynamic collection.
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