Mintage is limited to just 1,867 pieces. This series is issued by the Canadian Heritage Mint, and includes a certificate of authenticity attesting to the mintage, weight and fineness. As investment quality .9999 fine silver items, this series is HST/GST exempt.
Polar Bear Design (first release)
The design on the 100 gram pure silver polar bear is based on the Canada Post two dollar Polar Bear stamp issued in 1998. The original stamp design was created by Steven Slipp of Halifax, NS. The stamp was printed using both high security intaglio printing and lithography, creating a banknote style appearance to the design. The intaglio features of the original stamp have been maintained on the frame background design, thus combining the classic appearance of the stamp with the modern image of the medallic art.
Half of the world's 40,000 polar bears live in Canada - in the coastal regions of both the Northwest Territories and the Yukon, and in Manitoba, Ontario and arctic Quebec. As their Latin name ursus maritimus suggest, polar bears are maritime creatures. They spend most of their days out on the sea ice, hunting seals. Though they are believed to have evolved from grizzlies, polar bears have unique rounded shoulders and pronounced brow ridges. Their necks, skulls and noses are elongated and their muzzles are aquiline. Large paws help polar bears distribute their weight while walking on thin ice. Their front legs act as water propellers while their hind limbs function as rudders.
One of the most distinctive features of the polar bear is its colour. The white fur helps it blend into the arctic background and has special features for cold weather adaptation; it is translucent and transmits ultraviolet radiation to keep the skin warm. Equally distinctive is the polar bear's size. The largest carnivore in the world that lives mostly out of water, it can weight up to 800 kg - double the size of a grizzly!