Posted on October 06, 2017
If you’re buying silver each year, you undoubtedly look at the Australian Silver Kookaburra coin as a viable option. The longest running silver bullion coin from the Perth Mint debuted in 1990, and started a tradition at Perth that has continued across several other coin programs. Right now, JM Bullion has the 2018 Australian Silver Kookaburra coin available for pre-sale. What better time than the present to look at the latest release in the series? Get to know the 2018 design today!
Released in 1990, the Australian Silver Kookaburra features a new reverse design each year. It was the first coin of its kind from the Perth Mint, and for the 2018 release the Silver Kookaburra offers up a 29th new design for the collection. The coins of the 2018 Silver Kookaburra collection are available in three different weights:
The 2018 1 oz Australian Silver Kookaburra Coin is the only one of the three with a declared maximum mintage. The Perth Mint set this figure at 500,000 coins. The 10 oz and 1 Kilo coins have an unlimited mintage. For Perth Mint coins, this means the products are struck to meet demand from buyers through the end of the calendar year stamped as the date of issue on the coin. As 2018 coins, this means the mint will produce the coins through December 2018.
Perhaps the most important detail of the 2018 Australian Silver Kookaburra is its new silver purity. Since its introduction, the Kookaburra has featured .999 pure silver content. With the 2016 debut of the Australian Silver Kangaroo program, the Perth Mint unveiled its first-ever .9999 pure silver bullion coin. Starting with these 2018 Australian Silver Kookaburras, the leading bullion coin from the mint now also features .9999 pure silver content.
For 2018, the Perth Mint has chosen a stunning new design for its flagship silver coin series. On the coin’s reverse side you’ll find the image of a kookaburra in flight, with its wings spread behind it and its claws outstretched. An intricately detailed moon is rising into the background field, setting the scene for a kookaburra in flight at night. Engravings on this face of the coin include “Australian Kookaburra” above the design, and “2018 9999 Silver” along with the particular weight listed at the bottom. The “P” mint mark of the Perth Mint is featured in the lower-right design field.
The obverse of all Australian Silver Kookaburra coins features the familiar portrait of Queen Elizabeth II. Her Majesty is featured on the obverse of all Australian coinage, both circulation and commemorative. This is the fourth-generation effigy of the Queen to appear on Australian coinage since 1952, and this particular design was the creation of Ian Rank-Broadley, who designed the effigy in 1998. Engravings on this face include “Elizabeth II” and “Australia” above the design field and the face value of “1 Dollar” on the bottom.
When the Australian Silver Kookaburra coin debuted from the Perth Mint, the most popular bullion program running at the moment was the Australian Gold Nugget. The latter coin debuted in 1986 and featured reverse depictions of a gold nugget, reflecting the nation’s natural gold reserves and the gold rushes that shaped the growth of western regions Australia. With the introduction of the Silver Kookaburra, coin designs at the Perth Mint changed.
The Australian Silver Kookaburra was the first to feature native creatures on a bullion program, with the Perth Mint opting to use a new design on the reverse side of the coin each year. At this same time, the Perth Mint switched the Australian Gold Nugget to the Australian Gold Kangaroo, with a plan to feature the native marsupial species on the reverse in a new design each year.
Today, the Australian Kookaburra is the foundation upon which Perth Mint designs many of its bullion coin programs. The Australian Silver Koala coin debuted in 2007, celebrating its 10th anniversary with the 2017 release. A new design of the koala features on the reverse side of those coins each year as well. So, why was the kookaburra chosen?
Like the kangaroo and koala, the kookaburra is a unique species you’ll find predominantly on the Australian continent. Terrestrial tree kingfishers, the kookaburra is native to Australia and New Guinea and grow from 11 to 17 inches in length. Although most kingfisher species of birds are found near water, the kookaburra is not typically associated with water on the Australian continent. More interestingly, the kookaburra is a carnivorous species. The birds live on mice, snakes, insects, small reptiles, and even the young of other birds.
Kookaburras are distinct for one reason that many humans can relate to. The kookaburra’s bird call is notable for the sound the bird releases. Known to some as the laughing kookaburra, the birds have a call that sounds eerily similar to human laughter.
Located in Western Australia, the Perth Mint is the nation’s oldest operating facility. The Perth Mint opened in 1899 as the third and final location following the Sydney Mint and Melbourne Mint openings. With the federation movement in the first decade of the 20th century, the Royal Mint system was dismantled. The Perth Mint once filled the role as the primary mint for Australia, and was eventually turned over to the state government of Western Australia in 1970 once the Royal Australian Mint was opened in Canberra to service the independent minting needs of the nation.
The 2018 Australian Silver Kookaburra Coin is now available for pre-sale on JM Bullion. Remember to follow our blog each week for the latest news, information, and coin releases from mints around the globe. You can also follow us on Facebook to stay connected to JM Bullion and share your thoughts with us.