Germany: Green Hay Grasshopper Hops onto the Latest Coin in the Wonderful World of Insects Series

Germany releases another silver coin in their World of Insects series.

by Michael Alexander | Published on March 6, 2024

The German Federal Republic’s Ministry of Finance and Munze Deutschland have released the sixth coin in their numismatic series entitled Wonderful World of Insects focusing on the great biodiversity of the many insects which are part of the planet’s varied environments. The sixth coin is dedicated to the Green Hay grasshopper, an insect with particularly striking features that include a distinctive, deep green colouring and its head, said to resemble that of a horse. This species which is one of 80 inhabiting Germany and parts of Switzerland is the largest species of grasshopper measuring 40 mm. or 1.6 inches in length. 

The females are slightly larger than the males which in addition to their smaller size are known for their ability to attract a mate with their ‘song’. This unusual but loud sound is created when sexually mature males rub together their forewings, the resulting sound can be heard up to 150 metres or nearly 500 feet away. Responsive females will lay their eggs at the beginning of spring and towards the end of April, hundreds of tiny wingless grasshoppers hatch and shed their skin several times until they are fully grown. Their habitat includes bushes, meadows and forest edges with vegetation at least 30 centre metres of one foot high. The Green Hay Horse can also be easily spotted in home gardens, flying around with ease and precision. However, they only move when startled and it is this typical startling which gives these grasshoppers their name.

Designed by artist Patrick Niesel, his depiction on the obverse side shows a female green hay horse in full colour shown sitting on a leaf in their preferred habitat. Below the primary design is the text GRÜNES HEUPFERD placed along the lower right rim. The reverse side which is common to all nine coins in the series is designed by Graphic artist Andre Witting of Berlin and features a stylised eagle centred with the issuer BUNDESREPUBLIK DEUTSCHLAND placed directly above along the edge. The denomination

5 EURO is just above the eagle. Also incorporated into the design are twelve stars below the eagle, which represent the European Union and are arranged along the lower edge. The mintmark ‘A’ is seen between the second and third star representing the mint of Berlin and the year of issue 2024 is seen between the ninth and tenth star. An incused lettered inscription on the edge of the coin reads WONDERWELT INSECTEN (wonderful world of insects)

Denomination  Metal  Weight  Diameter  Quality  Total Mintage
5 Euro  Cupro-nickel  9.6 g.  27.2 mm.  UNC & Colourn/a
5 Euro  Cupro-nickel  9.6 g. 27.2 mm.  Proof & Colour100,000

Each proof quality coin is encapsulated. The UNC versions are available from the issue date for their face value of 5 euros at the branches of the Deutsche Bundesbank as well as many commercial & savings banks and coin dealers. For more information, please visit the webshop of Munze Deutschland.

A high-quality souvenir album is available as a separate purchase and is an ideal way to store each of the 5-euro coloured coins from the "Wonderful World of Insects" series. The nine encapsulated coins in the series can be easily inserted in and out of the album.

The remaining three coins in the series will be released during 2024 as follows:

The grove hoverfly – June

The stag beetle – September

The stone bumblebee - November

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Author: Michael Alexander

Michael Alexander image Michael’s background in both numismatics and banknotes spans more than three decades and whose activities have varied from being a dedicated world coin collector to coin & medal design, marketing, theme concept and production. His additional interests include banknote research and in 1997, he founded the London Banknote and Monetary Research Centre to further these interests and activities. The company continues to offer monthly currency bulletins to both online and printed publications which includes information about the latest banknote news and releases from Central Banks and Monetary Authorities around the world. Michael has been a contributor to COIN NEWS magazine based in the UK since 1998 where many of his in-depth interviews, articles and bulletins have been published.

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