The prehistoric creatures that roamed the land before us inspire a mix of awe, curiosity and even fear. This three-coin series captures some of their fiercest and most wondrous attributes—beginning with the intimidating Quetzalcoatlus, which was the largest known creature to ever possess flying abilities.
The reverse design by Canadian artist Dino Pulera features an intricately engraved rendition of how a Quetzalcoatlus likely appeared, and was reviewed for scientific accuracy by palaeontologist at the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology. The use of selective colour brings this long-gone species to life in incredible detail; soaring with only an occasional flap of its enormous wings, the terrifyingly large reptile keeps one wing bent towards the viewer while the left wing is outstretched. Its long, pointed beak is open wide, releasing a cry into the wind as it prepares to swoop down to find prey. The coin’s own silver surface recreates radiant rays of bright sunlight peeking through the clouds above the distant mountains, which convey how high the plane-sized creature would soar above the conifer forest below.
An artistic way to learn more about the species whose fossils connect us with a distant past, and the way Canada’s landscape has evolved over millions of years.