Swamp Jaguars, Los Lllanos Prowlers: 20 Bolívar Soberano (Venezuela, 2018)-Founder's Article

Updated: Nov 12, 2021

This Venezuelan banknote represent the 4th denomination of the Bolívar Soberano Series (2018). Bolívars are have been deemed essentially worthless, even within their home country. As rampant hyperinflation has caused all denominations, with the exception of the 500 Bolívares to be retired.


Despite this, Venezuelan Bolívars have found a new home. As an easily affordable item for beginning/young collectors. These collectors are often become attracted, by the colorful illustrations of Venezuela’s wildlife. Often creating decorative displays, with the reverse side out. In honor of that tradition this note will be reviewed reverse first.


Reverse

The Reverse features a South American Jaguar, also known as the Yaguar (Jaguar) in local

Spanish. Jaguars range throughout large portions of South America, with isolated populations far as Northern Mexico. Their range has been greatly diminished, historical spanning from Northern Argentina to the American Southwest.


Los Llanos

Some of the largest Jaguars in the world, live in the Los Llanos. An expansive seasonal flood plain, located in North Western Venezuela. Males and Females in this region, can weigh up to 120 kg (260 lb) and 90 kg (200 lb) respectively. Meaning female Jaguars in this region, can often exceed the maximum size of males elsewhere.


Portions of the Los Lllanos seasonally alternate between wooded grassland and wetland. Due to the 6 month long rainy season, which spans from May to October. Unusual for large cats, Jaguars will swim between patches of dry land. And occasionally will swim underwater, alternating to a snorkel to remain hidden. Jaguars in this region are known stalk prey, by using the water their advantage. This includes actively chasing prey into water. And even submerging themselves, for ambushes.


Waraira Repano

The note's background is an illustration of Waraira Repano National Park. More commonly known as El Ávila and colloquially as "el pulmón de la ciudad", the Lungs of the City. Established in 1958, El Ávila overlooks the Venezuelan capital, Caracas. El Ávila provides a nearby escape from city life, for the residents of Caracas.


Its mountainous forest and valleys are home to more than 100 butterfly, 120 mammal, 20 amphibians, 30 reptiles and 500 bird species. Jaguars were once relatively common, although have been reduced to the more isolated sections of the park.


El Ávila provides visitors dozens of trails of varying skill levels. Allowing visitors to choose an experience appropriate to their preferences. A number attractions are spread throughout the park, including villages, ruins, waterfalls, and monuments.


Including the longest cable car ride in the world, El Teleférico de Caracas. Which provides a 3.5km (2.17mi) long tram ride to El Ávila Mountain's peak. A round trip costs 100 Bs for Venezuelans and 110 Bs for non-Venezuelans. Tickets are bought at Hotel Humboldt station.

Observe

The vertical observe features Venezuelan philosopher Simón

Rodríguez (1769-1854). Who served as Simón Bolívar's tutor and mentor. He was exiled from Venezuela, in 1797. Due to his role in the failed Gual and España Conspiracy (1797). Which inspired Simón Bolívar's own successful independence movement, against Spanish colonialism.


Countermeasures

Despite the low value of the Bolívar Soberano, the series utilizes numerous security measures. Both in visible and virtually hidden. The Soberano series alternates between standard and window security strips, throughout it's denominations. This denomination utilizes a windowed security strip. The strip displays "BCV" in sequence, when back lit. The triangle above the (red) serial number, is a denomination designator. Which alternates between the denominations within the series. There is a 2-color light puzzle/registration element, below the (black) serial number. Dark blue (observe) and gold (reverse) segments merge, when back lit.


Micro-Print

The near entirety of the note is covered in alternating lines and micro-print patterns. Where present the micro-text reads “BCV20”, in sequence. The pattern repeats on all denominations, with the exception of the number (listed denomination). Below the observe's portrait is an opened micro-print pattern book. This feature is unique to the 20 Bolivar denomination.

Watermark

The watermark features Simón Bolívar, as seen on the 500 Bolívar Soberano note's observe. Below the watermark is BCV, in electro-typed text. Unfortunately the color pallet and erratic micro-print lines makes capturing the watermark difficult. Although it can be readily seen, in physical copies of the note.


Ultraviolet Gallery

Additional Notes

  • This note's dimensions are 156 × 69 mm (6.14 x 2.72in), standard for Bolívar Soberano Series.

  • Most of Simón Rodríguez's written works were stored in Guayaquil, Ecuador. But were lost when large portions of the city burned, in 1896.

  • Simón Rodríguez was exiled from Venezuela and lived under the name Samuel Robinson.

  • In 2003, the Venezuelan government enacted Mission Robinson. A volunteer program targeted at bringing literacy to Venezuela’s adults.

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