Pobjoy Mint has released a new coin on behalf of the British Antarctic Territory featuring the hourglass dolphin, continuing the series of coins showing the animals that live in or visit this frozen territory.
First described in 1824 during a French expedition to the Antarctic, the dolphin with Latin name cruciger, meaning “cross-bearing,” is more commonly called the hourglass dolphin, resulting from a different view of its distinctive markings.
This small species of dolphin has a compact body and striking black and white pattern and is generally found in a circumpolar band around the Antarctic. Hourglass dolphins can generally be seen in groups of eight animals or less, but larger schools of around 60 individuals have been reported. The hourglass dolphin is a keen bow-wave rider and often approaches boats from a distance at great speed.
The reverse on this 2015 coin shows a pair of hourglass dolphins swimming in Antarctic waters among the icebergs.
The obverse of the coin carries the Ian Rank-Broadley effigy of Queen Elizabeth II.
Two versions of the coin have been issued: an Uncirculated copper-nickel coin and a Proof .925 fine (sterling) silver coin.
Both coins weigh 28.28 grams and measure 38.6 millimeters in diameter.
The copper-nickel coin has a mintage limit of 50,000 pieces and costs $16.95 each.
The silver coin is limited to a mintage of 10,000 pieces, and each costs $89.
To order the Hourglass Dolphin coin, visit the Pobjoy Mint website.
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