It was not until 1976 that the first dinosaur fossil was discovered in Japan--a humerus of a sauropoda from the Lower Cretaceous periodwas found in the Iwate Prefecture. Afterwards, 80% of Japanese dinosaur fossils were discovered by "The First Fukui Dinosaur Excavation Project" from 1989 to 1993, and a second project held from 1995 to 1999. One of the first dinosaurs to be displayed after the Fukui Prefectural Dinosaur Museum opened in Katsuyama-city on July 14, 2000 was a new species of meat-eating dinosaur from 120 million years ago, which was named Fukuiraptor. This 4.2-meter long theropod was found locally in Kitadani, Katsuyama City, and is pictured in full color on the newly issued Fukui Prefecture 1000 yen 1-oz. pure silver proof coin. The Fukui Prefectural Dinosaur Museum is the only dedicated dinosaur museum in all of Japan, and is considered one of the "World's Three Great Dinosaur Museums," along with the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology in Canada and the Zigong Dinosaur Museum in China. The landscape in the coins background is Tojinbo Cliff facing the Sea of Japan--that has been designated as one of Japan's natural monuments. A number of traditional crafts have their home in Fukui, including lacquerware, Japanese-style paper, agate working, blade-making, and pottery. Other local industries include textiles and a lens-crafting industry that ranks among the best in the world. In addition, electronic products--including Panasonic--account for approximately 25% of the total industrial shipments for the prefecture. Fukuis nuclear power plants make it an energy supply base for the surrounding economic region. The 1 oz. pure silver proof Fukui Prefecture dinosaur coin is available from the official American distributor, Panda America.
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