The Royal Canadian Mint has recently launched an exciting new coin that celebrates the remarkable greater sage-grouse. This stunning coin showcases the natural splendour of this unique bird and offers a fantastic opportunity for coin enthusiasts and nature lovers to appreciate the rich biodiversity of Canada.
Each spring, the male greater sage grouse puts on an impressive courtship display to attract his mate. He puts on a show for the female greater sage grouse community, fanning out his plumage, popping his chest and strutting his stuff to get chosen. These displays are held on leks, a piece of bare ground near sagebrush cover. Males may mate with more than one female.
Currently, in Canada, there are only 5 known leks. The greater sage grouse is an endangered species, which is one of the reasons that the Royal Canadian Mint released a 2023 coin set that features this magnificent bird that is threatened in its natural habitat in southern Alberta and Saskatchewan.
2023 Canada Conservation Stories: Greater Sage-Grouse Specimen Set
This 2023 Canadian coin set is perfect for nature and wildlife lovers. It comes with 6 different coins, a $2, $1 exclusive specimen coin featuring the greater sage grouse, and 50-cent, 25-cent, 10-cent, and 5-cent newly minted coins. Canadian artist David Caesar designed the coin that showcases the male’s courtship display. The obverse features the late Queen Elizabeth II’s effigy.
Why You Should Care About The Greater Sage Grouse
According to the World Wildlife Fund, the sage grouse are indicators of healthy sagebrush habitat. The loss of the greater sage grouse species impacts other wildlife that also lives on the sagebrush, the swift fox, pronghorn, bison and songbirds.
The habitat has been disrupted by oil and gas development. Predators use the energy towers to perch, which intimidates the grouse and disrupts their ability to reproduce. Lack of mating grounds interrupts their reproduction cycle, leading to even fewer grouse.
Many organizations are working to help maintain and increase their population. The set comes packaged in a book-style casing that lets you view the coins without touching their surface. It would make a great gift for anyone interested in nature and Canada’s great variety of wildlife.
Previous Conservation Sets
This set is part of a conservation series issued by the Mint to raise awareness of species recovery efforts in Canada. The previous sets featured other wildlife that is important to Canada.
The 2020 set featured the black-footed ferret, which WWF calls one of the most endangered mammals in North America. It’s the only ferret species native to Canada and the continent. The ferret is featured on the $1 coin, which is only available to purchase as part of the set.
The 2021 set featured the Blanding’s turtle, a rapidly declining species in both Canada and the United States. The turtle is known for its longevity. It can live upwards of 90 years. Because it doesn’t start mating until its teenage years, killing off the hatchlings seriously impacts its population. This turtle is found in the Great Lakes Basin. Its habitat has also been disrupted, which in turn disrupts the other wildlife in the community. The exclusive $1 coin features the Blanding’s turtle and hopes to help bring awareness to its plight.
In 2022, the Royal Canadian Mint focused on the swift fox, a wild canine that is smaller than the average house cat. It’s North America’s smallest wild canine, weighing in at about 2.45 kg. The exclusive $1-coin depicts the swift fox running at full speed, which can be upwards of 60 km per hour. At one time, the fox was considered endangered. Today, it’s downgraded to threatened, but the species needs to be protected.
Bring Awareness To Conservation Efforts
Look for these coins and more at Colonial Acres Coins to learn more about wildlife in Canada and to support endangered species. Shop for wildlife coins now.