The Beauty of Nature on a Coin

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May 14, 2015 – The latest coin in the “Shades of Nature” series designed by Coin Invest Trust for the Cook Islands is dedicated to the blue nawab (Polyura schreiber). The coin unites cutting-edge technology with the breathtaking beauty of nature.

Cook Islands / 2015 / 5 Dollars / Silver .925 / 25 g / 38.61 mm / Proof / Mintage: 2000 pcs.

Against the background of artfully contrasting matte and polished golden surfaces gleams the magnificent silver butterfly. It is a specimen of the blue nawab, also known under its Latin name Polyura schreiber.
First scientifically documented by French entomologist Jean Baptiste Godart in 1824, this butterfly is today well known to all specialists in the field in its natural habitat in Asia and beyond. The species is predominantly found in Singapore, Malaysia, and the Philippines.

Blue nawab. Source: Wikicommons.

An impressive wingspan of 115 mm and the memorable pattern on the underside – brown, grey and olive-green bands and dots on a light-grey ground – render this butterfly a unique sight. The upper side is equally unforgettable, with deep blue areas separated from a brilliant white section by a light-blue band.
With their four conspicuous, rust-coloured tubercles on the head and the yellow-orange marks on the third body segment, the otherwise bright green caterpillars of the blue nawab seem to be creatures from a different planet. The nocturnal animals feed during the night and rest during the day, producing silk threads which they use to attach themselves to the leaves of their native tree.

For the Cook Islands, Coin Invest Trust has now immortalised a miniature version of this magnificent butterfly. Thanks to the latest micro-technology it has become possible to engrave even the most intricate wing details on the matte finish coin and to make the surface come to life.
The coins are minted by B.H. Mayer’s Kunstprägeanstalt GmbH. Collectors can purchase the issue through specialty dealers.

For more information on this coin or other coins designed by CIT please visit the website of Coin Invest Trust.

In this video you can watch a blue nawab (Polyura schreiber) caterpillar moulting to take on its pupal form.