Saturday, February 2, 2013

Happy Groundhog Day

Early morning, every February 2,  the groundhog, Punxsutawney Phil, leaves his burrow to predict the weather. If it's sunny and he sees his shadow, he scurries back into his burrow for another six weeks of cold weather. If it's overcast, he hangs around for an early spring. This morning, Phil didn't see his shadow, so we should have an early spring. Hooray!

A fun tradition, but how does Phil do with his predictions? According to, Punxsutawney Phil has only been correct approximately 39% of the time. However, long range forecasts aren't usually too accurate more that seven days out so I think that we're asking a lot from a groundhog to predict the weather for weeks.

My backyard groundhog didn't come out to see his shadow today.

In all of this hubbub, I thought I would check out my local, backyard groundhog to see what he had to say about the subject. Basically, he said he was sleeping and go away. Meaning, the hole to his burrow has not been disturbed for a few months including today. So, he didn't see his shadow, but he didn't try to see his shadow. Or at least he didn't let himself be drug away from a peaceful sleep to predict the weather. I don't know what that means, but ultimately, I think that means that my groundhog is smarter than Punxsutawney Phil.

Want to know more about Groundhog Day?

Want a good overview of Groundhog Day including its origins?

Want to learn about Punxsutawney Phil and the see today's official proclamation about the weather?

Want to learn about some of the research going on with groundhogs?,0,2106484.story

Want to learn about the history of the Phil's weather prediciting abilities?