Coin Collecting at the Safir House
New Zealand 1996 Kaka Parrot 5 dollar Silver Coin

Tue Oct 24 05:33:10 2017

The Endangered Kaka and the New Zealand 1996 $5 Silver Kaka Coins

The New Zealand Kaka, whose scientific name is Nestor Meridionalis is a primitive Parrot native to New Zealand and which has been in decline mostly due to habitat lose and mammalian predication of its eggs.. The evolution of the species begins about 100 million years ago, prior to the K-Pg exintion event. It seems at that time that Gwondanaland seperated and New Zealand broke from the Australian continental plate, stranding a proto-kaka species on the New Zealand plate. This puts the Akak at the root of the Parrot lineage and it is repeatedly described as being as having primitive traits compared to other parrots, but I have failed to uncover exactly what those traits are.

At about 5 million years ago, with the advent of the Southern Alps developing, the Kea, the menace of new Zealand’s Drivers, broke off from the Kaka lineage. Later, with glaciation and warming periods, water levels increased and decreased, causing a separation of the two New Zealand Islands as they are today, or the formation of a single Island. The end result is today is that there are two separate subspecies of Kaka, in the north and the south.
Click here to enlarge
Click here to enlarge
Kaka are normally about 18 inches long, considerably larger than my African Grey, and weigh in at about a pound to 14 ounces. They have a drag or olive green over tone to their plumage with spots of orange, yellow and white. They have long curved beaks and eat mostly fruit, berries, nectar (they has a specially adapted tongue for this similar to Lorekeets) , invertebrates, seed and especially the cones of a kauri tree.

The birds are very arboreal, and maintain more time in trees than other parrots, giving them a slightly different gait than other parrots. There are far more males than females because females are hunted when nesting by invasive mammals like the Mustela erminea which is a kind of weasel, most famous for being painted by Leonardo. Earlier in history, the parrots were also hunted for food. Populations have been crashing due to predation and habitat loss, and we haven’t yet seen the bottom. More efforts are being made to save the birds, as it, like many New Zealand Birds are threatened.

The 1996 Five Dollar Kaka Silver coin is a proof release with a mintage of 3000 and a Kaka on the reverse and Queen Elizabeth II on the obverse. It is 92.5% silver that was also part of a proof set. It is reeded with a weight of 28.28 grams., and a diameter of 38.61 mm. It also came as a Cu-Ni version. It was minted in the British Royal Mint. The silver version is 0.8411 ounces of silver. With good shopping, the coin can be available for about $60 USD.

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1996 NZ Kaka Parrot $5 Silver Reverse

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1996 NZ Kaka Parrot $5 Silver Reverse



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From the coin Show at Melville Long Island

The Safir Family Internet Coins Library: Foriegn Coins.

Several mints from around the world make exciting coin designs in circulating alloys, silver and gold. Among my favorites are the Perth Mint in Austrailia which produces a variety of coins for nations mostly through out the Pacific Rim. The Neatherlands has also produced some interesting designs, and several private US based mints have produced foreign currency on contract, include the Franklin Mint which has produced many Israeli Coins.
Our interest in foreign coins has been nominal but rapidly growing as it seems that US designs are so stuck in the mud. Also, foreign mints are creating bold new designs with color and bimetal designs that are both eye catching and fun.

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