Two-euro coin to feature natural treasures of Žuvintas reserve
On 19 May, the central bank will issue into circulation the €2 commemorative coin dedicated to Žuvintas Biosphere Reserve, which is included in UNESCO’s World Network of Biosphere Reserves (UNESCO’s Man and the Biosphere Programme). The mintage of the coin is 500,000 pcs, of which 5,000 pcs are of BU quality.
“This is the fourth commemorative euro coin dedicated to the unique natural and cultural heritage of Lithuania included in the UNESCO list. The Lithuanian bittern or the aquatic warbler from Žuvintas can end up in a wallet of any European, thus encouraging them to discover our country. We are planning to commemorate more objects of the Lithuanian natural heritage included in the UNESCO’s Programmes in the future,” said Asta Kuniyoshi, Deputy Chair of the Board of the Bank of Lithuania. The Bank of Lithuania has already issued €2 commemorative coins dedicated to cultural objects included in various UNESCO’s Programmes: the Hill of Crosses (Cross-crafting), Lithuanian multipart songs (‘sutartinės’) and the Lithuanian Song Festival.
The national side of the coin depicts the characteristic surroundings of Žuvintas Biosphere Reserve: remote islands of a unique bird lake and Lithuania’s largest wetland as well as its distinctive fauna. In the foreground there is a great bittern reaching for a fire-bellied toad floating in the water. In the rushes there is an aquatic warbler, with a flock of grey cranes in the background and a mute swan. The obverse of the coin was designed by Eglė Ratkutė and Ernestas Žemaitis.
“Žuvintas Biosphere Reserve is home to over 4,200 species of animals, plants and mushrooms, and the researchers keep discovering new ones each year. It is one of the richest places in Lithuania in terms of biodiversity. As many as 137 species of animals, plants and mushrooms from the List of Protected Species of the Republic of Lithuania have been found here. One of the Europe’s rarest songbirds – aquatic warbler – lives in the wet grasslands at the edge of the marsh. Lithuania is one of only four countries where this globally endangered bird still breeds,” writes Arūnas Pranaitis in the electronic leaflet of the coin. The common side and the edge of the coin are the same as on €2 circulation coins with the Lithuanian national side.
The mintage of the coin is 500,000 pcs. It will be recognised as an official legal tender throughout the euro area. From the coin’s issue date (19 May), the UNC quality coins (495,000 pcs.) can be exchanged at their nominal value at the Bank of Lithuania cash offices. One person can exchange up to 50 coins per day.