Groundhog Day 2018: Who is Punxsutawney Phil? Did he see his shadow?

04 February, 2018, 02:06 | Author: Inez Murphy
  • Groundhog handler Bill Deeley and Punxsutawney,Phi

Chuck didn't see his shadow Friday morning and predicted an early spring.

What about Phil? According to the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club's website, Punxsutawney Phil weighs about 20 pounds and is 22 inches long. What does it mean?

If you haven't heard, the nation's premiere groundhog, Puxatawney Phil, did see his shadow this morning, and he's forecast six more weeks of winter. Did they call for an early spring or six additional weeks of winter weather?

Phil's keepers reported his weather prediction Friday morning on the USA observance of "Groundhog Day".

"Unfortunately, there have been years where the president has misinterpreted what Phil said", former handler Ron Ploucha told pennlive.com "Because Phil's never wrong, Phil's prediction is 100 percent correct, and we blame the variants on the president's interpretation of Phil's prediction". The famous Punxsutawney Phil, and Ohio's own weather-prognosticating rodent Buckeye Chuck, will reluctantly crawl out of their burrows to predict winter's end. Phil's prediction this year?

No one can talk to a horse, of course - or a groundhog.

Phil is not the only weather-predicting groundhog on the East Coast. Add one more year to that winter count.

"For example, the North Slope of Alaska, every fall season there's been warm for the past 15 years or something, relative to normal", Baxter said.

The Groundhog Day tradition was brought to America from Europe, and German settlers in Pennsylvania began celebrating the day in the 19th century, substituting that traditional hedgehog for a Groundhog. According to legend, if the rodent emerges from his dwelling and sees his shadow, six more weeks of winter should be expected.

There doesn't appear to be much "science" behind either groundhog's predictions, just folklore and fun.

Candlemas is also the traditional time in some countries when Christmas decorations are removed, so if you've been procrastinating the tree disposal, don't feel too bad.

Last year, Phil saw his shadow - which should have implemented a six-week winter period - but temperatures actually rose above the average during February and March.

Punxitawney Phil's accuracy rate is around 39 percent.

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