The Royal Australian Mint has released the third pair of gold and silver coins in their popular series entitled “Australia’s Most Dangerous,” which features some of the country’s more deadly, exotic, fierce, but unique and intriguing members of Australian wildlife. Following on from the Redback Spider (2020) and Great White Shark (2021), the third coin dated 2022 focuses on the Australian Desert Scorpion or Urodacus yaschenkoi. Found in open sandy woodland and shrubland occupying deep spiral burrows with wide, crescent-shaped openings, these deep spiral burrow constructions are thought to have evolved as an adaptation for the avoidance of harsh surface conditions in their natural habitat. This particular adaption and function of spiralling is for the maintenance of suitable levels of moisture and temperature. Burrows can be up to one metre (three feet) deep, occurring in open ground.
Desert scorpions, which can grow to between eight and 12 centremetres (4.7 inches) in length, can be identified by their stout body and yellow to reddish-brown colouring, depending on where it is found. They are known to be more aggressive than other sub-species of scorpion and are widespread throughout the deserts of Australia’s interior. They can be found from western New South Wales all the way to Northwestern Australia. Now, the bad news if humans should encounter their sting, which is administered through the telson in their tail. This part of their tail features a reservoir bulb where the scorpion’s venom is both produced and stored. The pain felt after a scorpion sting is instantaneous and extreme with swelling and redness usually appearing within five minutes. More severe symptoms can occur and may come within the hour. Although it is possible to die from a scorpion sting, it is thought unlikely for many as none of Australia’s scorpion species has been identified to have poisonous venom enough to routinely kill humans. However, it is indeed deadly to their prey, which they catch using their powerful pincers and holding it before stinging it with its poisonous tail.
The reverse side of the coins is designed by graphic artist Aaron Baggio whose depiction of the Australian desert scorpion in its desert environment with the rays of the Sun baking into the sand. To the left of the scorpion’s tail is the text DESERT SCORPION with the coins’ specifications of 1oz .9999 GOLD or 1oz .999 SILVER placed below the primary design.
The obverse side includes the Commonwealth effigy of HM Queen Elizabeth II created by Jody Clark and seen on Australian coinage since 2019. The denomination of 100 DOLLARS (gold) or 1 DOLLAR (silver) are placed below the Queen’s likeness.
|31.1 g||40 mm||Bullion||
|31.1 g||38.7 mm||Bullion||
Each coin is encapsulated and available as a separate purchase from one to up to 250 coins. For additional information, please visit the website of the Royal Australian Mint.
Collectors and investors interested in the gold version should visit LPM Ltd.