Australian Antarctic Territory Series
Previous articles on this blog already introduced the Royal Australian Mint as well as some of its collectible bullion coin series like the Australian Shipwreck coins. As the mint is always trying to step out of the shadow of its national competitor, the much more famous Perth Mint, it is known to frequently launch new coin series. Recently, the mint announced the start of the Australian Antarctic Territory Series which will focus on depicting animals that are native to this frosty part of the world.
The first 1 oz gold and silver coins of the new Australian Antarctic Territory Series depict an adult emperor penguin with its chick standing at the edge of the Antarctic ice while other emperor penguins are queuing in line to jump into the sea in the background. Mintage of the 99.9% pure 1 oz silver coins is limited to 25,000 pieces. The 99.99% pure 1 oz gold coins will be very difficult to obtain as their mintage is limited to only 250 pieces.
Jody Clark’s effigy of Queen Elizabeth II still appears on the obverse side of the gold and silver coins of the Australian Antarctic Territory Series. An unusual feature of this new collectible coin series is that it also includes base metal coins with selective coloring of their design. The emperor penguin design on these colored base metal coins is also different from the one that appears on the precious metal coins.
The 2nd issue of the colored base metal coins of the Australian Antarctic Territory Series is already out as well. It shows two humpback whales on the reverse side of the coins. That could be an indication that the 2nd issue of the gold and silver coins of the series will be dedicated to humpback whales as well, that is just speculation for now though.
Another precious metal coin series that showed wild animals was the Canadian Call of the Wild series which has already ended by now. The South African Mint has issued a similar coin series not just once but twice. Since coins with animal designs have increasingly proven to be popular with investors and collectors alike, it can be assumed that other mints will launch similar series in the future.