That’s mint! Birdwatcher stumbles upon one of Australia’s rarest coins worth $10,000 while searching for the elusive ‘white-browed babbler’
- An avid birdwatcher made an amazing discovery while searching for elusive bird
- Mick Cross was tracking elusive white-browed babbler when he make the find
- Mr Cross tumbled across one of Australia’s rarest coins worth up to $10,000
An avid birdwatcher has stumbled across one of Australia’s rarest coins while searching for the elusive white-browed babbler bird.
Western Australian man Mick Cross was photographing birds at Malcolm Dam near Leonora, north of Kalgoorlie, when he noticed a coin in the dirt only metres from a popular camp site.
After taking it out of the dirt and cleaning it up Mr Cross realised he had found one of Australia’s rarest ever coins: an 1865 Australian gold half sovereign.
Western Australian man Mick Cross discovered an extremely rare 1865 Australian gold half sovereign
Mr Cross was bird watching at the Malcolm Dam near Leonora (pictured) when he found the coin that sells for up to $10,000 on auction sites
In mint condition an 1865 Australian gold half sovereign can be worth $10,000.
In the condition which Mr Cross found the coin he would likely be looking at a windfall closer to $500 or $1000, The West Australian reported.
He credited the white-browed babbler for the discovery, as he was following the bird along the ground when he saw the coin.
‘I took it back and showed it to the boys at the camp and they were absolutely gobsmacked that I could go birdwatching and find a gold half sovereign and them running around the bush bloody sweating their a…s off got only a little bit of gold,’ he said.
Despite the potential value of the coin Mr Cross is not ready to part ways with it right away.
‘I am thinking it is my lucky coin. I might even get a jeweller to put a gold chain on it and turn it into my lucky charm,’ he said.
The solid gold coin is 19 mm diameter with milled edge and features the face of Queen Victoria on the front, wearing a wreath of banksia, and a royal crown and wreathe on the back.
The mintage for the year is reported to be 62,000 in 1865, the lowest mintage in the mid to late 1800s.
Half sovereign coins, rarer than the full sovereign coin, were discontinued in 1918 making each one exceedingly rare and highly sought after.
Half sovereign coins, rarer than the full sovereign coin, were discontinued in 1918 making each one exceedingly rare and highly sought after