This ten Dollar sterling silver proof coin is one piece that makes up a series of four that commemorate some of Australia's most endangered species.They were released on an annual basis between the years of 1995-1998. This commemorative coin pays tribute to the Hairy Nosed Wombat, is the first in the Endangered Species series and was released by the Royal Australian Mint in 1995. It is joined by the Numbat, Southern Right Whale and the Red Tailed Black Cockatoo. Nature and wildlife are a staple of Australian lifestyle and the continent in general. There is much pride taken in the native species of Australia and this series proved to be a highly popular one. The Endangered Species series was issued as both a standard proof coin and also as a Peidfort proof.
The reverse of the this coin was designed by Vladimir Gottwald and bears an image of a hairy nosed wombat eating from the ground of the Australian bush. The legend reads NORTHERN HAIRY NOSED WOMBAT at the lower right hand side and the denomination 10 DOLLARS. The obverse was designed by Ian Rank-Broadley and features his portrait of her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. It also bears the legend ELIZABETH II AUSTRALIA 1995. As the coins were issued individually and released in succession, they each had their own presentation box and packaging. The outer packaging for all the coins read ROYAL AUSTRALIAN MINT at the top and at the bottom is written AUSTRALIA'S ENDANGERED SPECIES (standard proof) or (Piedfort) depending on the type of coin that is included within.The plush presentation cases themselves are in each in a different colour and this coin celebrating the hairy nosed wombat is in black. On completion of the set a long case was issued, which allows the entire series to be housed together.
The northern hairy nosed wombat is a Marsupial that currently exists only inQueensland. It has a status of critically endangered and a study performed in 2003 revealed that the total remaining population was 113. Although they were once found all over New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland, the population is now restricted to a small area if Epping Forest National Park, Queensland. (Wikipedia, 2013) They are around 35cm tall and slightly larger than the common wombat. They are nocturnal animals with a diet consisting of grasses and roots and very useful nose that makes up for its poor eye-sight. Baby hairy nosed wombats are born one at a time and spend up to nine months in it's mothers pouch after birth. There are programs in place to help protect this particular species of wombat and to encourage breeding and it is thought that numbers are slowly beginning to rise.
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