Canadian Wildlife Silver Bullion Coins

The Royal Canadian Mint introduced the Wildlife Series of silver bullion coins in 2010. It will feature a total of six different designs released over the course of three years.

Besides the appeal of well executed rotating designs, each release of the series is also limited to a mintage of one million pieces. While this would be a high mintage for a numismatic issue, it is a fraction of the number of coins released for the Royal Canadian Mint’s popular Silver Maple Leaf bullion coins, which are produced based on demand. The RCM sold 17,879,270 of the one ounce coins in 2010. For 2011, sales had reached 17.8 million by October 1, 2011.

At the time of initial release, the coins of the Wildlife Series have been priced at only a small premium above the high mintage Silver Maple Leaf coins. A major bullion dealer currently lists the latest Wildlife release at a lowest price of $3.29 over spot, compared to $2.29 over spot for the Maple Leaf coins. The slight additional premium can potentially pay off in the longer term. The first two releases of the Wildlife series currently sell for a healthy premium above spot.

The Canadian Wildlife Silver Bullion Coins have a weight of one troy ounce and are struck in .9999 fine silver. Each coin carries an obverse design containing the effigy of Queen Elizabeth II designed by Susanna Blunt. The face value of the coins is $5.

The first release of the series featured the Timber Wolf and was released in late 2010, carrying the 2011 date.

The second release featured the Grizzly Bear and was released and dated 2011.


The third coin in the series featuring the Cougar was released in late 2011 and carried the 2012 date.

The fourth release featured the Moose. These coins were announced in February 2012, and carry the 2012 date.

The fifth design within the series featured the Pronghorn Antelope. This coin was announced in August 2012 and carried the 2013 date.

The sixth and final design of the series featured the Wood Bison. The design for this 2013-dated coin was unveiled in February 2013 at the World Money Fair in Berlin.

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  1. Zwiggy says

    Really nice coin designs – the only issue with these is the “milk spots” that show up on the coin – especially on those that have been removed from the RCM sealed packing. I got the wolf and grizzly – and when they started to look extremely ugly with those spots, I gave up on the series.

  2. Rolling Thunder says

    The wolf is my favorite – the RCM also made a 1/2 oz with same wolf design in 2006.

    The Wildlife series is a good way to invest in bullion with numismatic potential – have been collecting 5+ of each design. Unlike Perth Lunar where you get to invest in bullion at numismatic prices!

    Off topic – received notice from Talisman that the dragons I ordered Feb 2nd have shipped today – will have to retract some of the bad comments I made about them a few blogs back – after 7weeks of waiting I never expected to see these coins – thanks Talisman, you are no longer my least favorite coin company – just the slowest!

  3. Eric The Red says

    I purchased several of the Bear, Cougar and Moose. I missed the Wolf. Does anyone where to buy some wolf’s at a decent price? Everywhere I looked the prices seem astronomical in comparison. Off topic does anyone like the Canadian Silver Year proof set? I bought some of the Canadian 1812 200th Anniversary Commemorative Silver dollar but was a bit leery on the Proof Set at $ 224.95 Canadian as the price seems a bit too high?

  4. says

    I have a friend who has been buying tubes of these religiously. I always make sure to get a few myself when the new versions are released. Outside of Perth Lunars, these are my favorite foreign bullion coins.

  5. Hidalgo says

    @ErictheRead – I bought the CDN 2012 silver proof set and returned it. I believe the cost is too high for a set that has a bit more than just 2 ounces of silver. Plus, when I checked out eBay, there are plenty of these sets for sale with few buyers. That tells me that demand is low for the set and if you’re going to try to sell them in the future, you might possibly have difficulty selling them. We can all speculate what the future of these will be, but based on what I’m seeing right now, the sets do not seem to be a good buy. Individual coins, however, are a different story. The silver penny and the silver commemorative dollar are key coins….

  6. G says

    I love this series. I bought a few of the 06 50 cent silver wolves and have one or two of each. I even got a 70 ANACS wolf and an ngc 68 bear. Those were hard to find in high grades. I didn’t pay much of a premium. I wish I’d bought a tube of the bears when they were 700. What do you think the last two will be? I love how close to melt these cost and think they’re a really fun way to get silver. Big fan- came awful close to a roll on each of the releases. I think the love it or hate it coin is the cougar but the moose is getting some votes too. Everybody loves the wolf and bear

  7. Broooster says

    The Bear is ok, but the Wolf and the Moose are my favs, with the Moose looking like a reverse proof. I mean really, who don’t like a reverse proof looking coin ???
    @ Eric The Red, good luck finding good deals on the Wolf, if anyone knows of a cheap place to get these, please post.

  8. DR JOE says

    I bought the bears in a roll for birthdays for kids, grandkids and all the neices and nephews last year. Big hit with them. Guess I need to ask them if any have noticed the ‘spotting’. This year I went with the Britannia coin for the birthdays. So far the boys like the bear better and the girls like the English coin better. And both of the above are favored above the silver eagle from 2 years ago that started the series for all of them. Would love to support US Mint but in my sample of n=24, they are last.

  9. Zwiggy says

    I bought them in what appeared to be RCM sealed mylar sheets. I did not keep them in the mylar and moved them to plastic flips (not PVC) just for the sake of saving on storage space.

  10. Samuel says

    of topic.
    mintage 1000! at perthmint.check it out!


  11. says

    Samual…nice find! Reasonable price…but I’ll leave this one alone…I can stand the Queen on one side of a coin, but not two…these coins may have a low mintage, but don’t really do much for me. I noticed Perth has not set a limit either on how many you can order…that tells you something.

  12. Samuel says

    Steve, I noticed the limit issue as well. it maybe not that hot, I am not sure, just ordered one set. I compared CA, UK, AUS queen coins, and think this set is more interesting, especially it is gilded. And, any other coins has a mintage of 1000?

  13. Louis says

    I’ve been buying these coins from the beginning and had no spots at all. In fact, the quality is superb esp. on the wolves.
    Most of these coins come from rolls of 25 coins which are then put in monster boxes of many rolls. But apparently some are sold individually wrapped in sheets. Has anyone else bought them in sheets?
    Seems like a lot of folks have warmed up to the moose design. When the pics were first released I suggested waiting and seeing the coins, which I think are quite nice.

  14. Louis says

    I got the Canadian set for $205 delivered and am very happy with it. I don’t care whether or not I can flip it for a profit. You can still buy it from the Mint and lots of dealers, so why would you expect to be able to make a profit now? Besides, if one follows the logic of the last part of your comment, someone looking for an immediate profit could break up the set and sell the individual coins for $300 or more, which is what some have done on e-Bay.

  15. says

    I gotta say the moose is pretty cool, but I’m partial to the cougar, because it’s the mascot of my college. This is a nice series, and a nice way to collect silver bullion without too high of a premium.

  16. Schalk says

    Steve, re New Zealand Mint WW2 Nose Art coins. The concept is interesting, however, all three coins have the same struck image with a different painted colored image on top – not something I would invest in.

  17. Hidalgo says

    @Louis – I agree. I collect coins primarily for the beauty of the designs, not to flip. However, when I opened up my CDN 2012 pure silver proof set, I was disappointed. I felt the picture on the CDN Mint’s website looked better than the actual coins themselves! I knew I would not hold onto the set for very long because of that. So I asked myself if I should hold onto the set and let it sit in a box without looking at it, hold onto it for say a month and try to sell something below the price I paid, or return it at the sales price….

  18. SliderMaker-mp says

    This has been a fun series and has made for great Christmas presents and conversations for the kids. Each design has been interesting, with the levitating, yawning cougar providing comedic relief. Have not noticed any milk spots yet (unlike some maples) taken from rolls.
    Thanks Michael. Please let us know when the new designs are released.

  19. says

    @Schalk…actually these are 3 unique coins (unlike the 9 colored dragons that differ only in color). While the WW2 Nose Art coins are very similar, they aren’t the exact same coin with just a different picture painted on them. Notice that “$2” and “.999 FINE SILVER” are in different locations on each coin.

  20. Schalk says

    Steve, I guess I am trying to say that coin making is a centuries old art form – the coin designer/maker always striving to create and strike a masterpiece. Take for example the Canadian coins in this post, or the Gold Buffalo, even the high relief dragons from Perth – or coins dating back to when hammering methods were used to make the coin. They all have in common the quality and accuracy of strike of the coin. The Nose Art coin is a blank precious metal disc with a few letters on it and decorated with a transferred color image – not even painted. The images on China
    ware is much more of a challenge because the artist’s canvass is a lot bigger.

    From a grading perspective, if you want to have it graded, what determines a good strike on this coin – with the ultimate grade “as struck”?

    Maybe I am more of a traditionalist than I thought 🙂

    To me, the coins that New Zealand Post distributes are far more attractive than the coins that New Zealand mint distributes.

  21. Rolling Thunder says

    Bpought a roll of Cougars several months ago – 24 of 25 coins good no milk spots – 1 coin looks like milk spilled all over it!

    Received an e-mail today from RCM stating that the $10. silver Titanic coin is “sold out”

    Bought two about a week ago & received them – just got under the wire with these!

  22. Louis says

    @Hidalgo. Thanks for clarifying. I did realize that you got a set and did not like it. Definitely return to seller if you can in that case.

    I did some checking, and I do not think any of these wildlife coins were sold in sheets, only rolls of 25.

  23. Nate says

    Louis, did you see gatewest has 2 listings for each Wildlife coin: one ‘normal’ listing (all sold out) and one listing for the coins in Thermotron sealed strips. Not sure what they are really.

  24. Samuel says

    my friend told me the HR dragon showed up at perthmint website last thursday. that explains why downies restores the cancelled orders.

  25. Two Cents says

    It pays to check out the Perth Mint’s website frequently. Other previously “Unavailable” coins are often put up for sale again for a short period of time (sometimes for hours or minutes). I noticed that with the Opal Koala, and Berlin, Welsh and High Relief Dragons. Once it goes to “Sold Out,” though, it really is gone for good.

  26. Tallon says

    If you remember back a couple of posts ago, a “new variety” Canadian lotus dragon with gold rim trim was linked. Here is some information about that coin and the gold rim trim from the eBay seller of that coin:

    “Yes, they come with coa and box. I do not know if the capsule is Canadian mint capsule or not. I’m afraid the decorating golden ring is made by the Chinese coin distributor.”

    Not exactly a new variety. Oh well.

  27. Hidalgo says

    @Louis – now that Canada has decided to remove the penny from circulation, I wonder what the future of the Canadian penny will be. Will Canada make cents for collectors? Or will the 2012 penny be the last yearly issue? If it is the last of the cents, then the silver 2012 penny may indeed by a collector’s item.

    Do you know if Canada plans to make 2013 cents (and beyond) available for collectors (i.e., mint them only for proof, uncirculated sets)?

  28. Louis says

    @Hidalgo — From what I can determine, they will not be making any for collectors either. If anyone here has heard anything different, please let us know.

    That silver penny should indeed prove to be very special now that it will be the only silver penny ever made by Canada (or probably any country, as far as I know).

    It’s been a good year for Canadian coins.

  29. Louis says

    @Nate. Thanks, I saw that but forgot about it. I don’t know if they came that way from the Mint, or if they put them in the strips, but they probably got them that way.

  30. Tim Barker says

    These are great coins, the wolf has had a premium for awhile now. I like them all. The cougar is my fav. The latest Wolf Full Moon sold out rather quickly and some dealers have now tacked on a 50 dollar premium over original cost. This coin is fantastic in the maple display case.

  31. Linda Lamberth says

    Love the coins. Any idea where I can obtain the presentation box? I have the 4 coins released thus far and I’d like to display the complete set when they release the 2013 coins.

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