Climate and Weather

Weather Prediction

Can groundhogs accurately predict the weather?

Over a 60-year period, groundhogs have accurately predicted the weather (i.e., when spring will start) only 28 percent of the time on Groundhog Day, February 2. Groundhog Day was first celebrated in Germany, where farmers would watch for a badger to emerge from winter hibernation. If the day was sunny, the sleepy badger would be frightened by his shadow and duck back for another six weeks’ nap; if it was cloudy he would stay out, knowing that spring had arrived. German farmers who immigrated to Pennsylvania brought the celebration to America. Finding no badgers in Pennsylvania, they chose the groundhog as a substitute.


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