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Groundhog Day

Feb 01, 2016

February 2nd is Groundhog Day. Although nobody gets a day off school, this holiday is still worth mentioning. Critters, like the groundhog or woodchuck, normally don't have holidays named after them, so how was the groundhog chosen?

A Brief History

The roots of Groundhog Day go back to the 6th century. It began with the German myth that, by simply showing up, hibernating animals were able to predict when springtime came.

Groundhog Day is a big deal - look at the people!Groundhog Day is a big deal - look at the people!
 

It is also believed that if the groundhog comes out of its hole and sees its shadow, we are in store for 40 more days of winter. To see a shadow, the sun must be out and the groundhog has to look in the correct direction. This weather folklore began in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. Punxsutawney Phil (the official US groundhog) is only accurate about 26% of the time.

If this guy sees his shadow, it's one more month of winter for usIf this guy sees his shadow, it's one more month of winter for us
 

What's In a Name?

Woodchuck and groundhog are common names for the same animal, the rodent with the scientific name of Marmota monax. Most closely related to squirrels, woodchucks can actually climb trees and swim.

Groundhogs are also known as woodchucksGroundhogs are also known as woodchucks
 

Fast Facts About Woodchucks

Unlike beavers, these guys can't move timber, although some will chew on it. A wildlife biologist once measured the inside volume of a typical woodchuck burrow and estimated that - if wood filled the hole, instead of dirt - the industrious animal would have chucked about 700 pounds worth!

Have Your Say

What's your prediction for Groundhog Day? Will he see his shadow or not?

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Do You Believe in Groundhog Day?

  • Yes. I think the seasons change - or don't - because of groundhogs.
  • No. It's just a silly old wives tale.
  • I'm not sure.
  • I believe in Groundhog's Day only if it means an early spring!

Random In The Forums

Unrung
Unrung posted in Say Anything:
I've been reading some of Alexander Pope's writings recently, most notably An Essay on Man. Much of it ponders the essense of man, and his place in creation. Pope, in the third Epistle (or chapter, if you will,) argues that man is no more entitled to anything than anything else. Some key stanzas... "Has God, thou fool! work'd solely for thy good, Thy joy, thy pastime, thy attire, thy food? Who for thy table feeds the wanton fawn, For him as kindly spread the flow'ry lawn: Is it for thee the lark ascends and sings? Joy tunes his voice, joy elevates his wings. Is it for thee the linnet pours his throat? Loves of his own and raptures swell the note.  [...] Know, nature's children all divide her care; The fur that warms a monarch, warm'd a bear. While man exclaims, 'See all things for my use!' 'See man for mine!' replies a pamper'd goose: And just as short of reason he must fall, Who thinks all made for one, not one for all." What are your thoughts on this?
reply about 1 hour
-Oracle-
-Oracle- posted in Say Anything:
5
reply about 3 hours
inkdeath
inkdeath posted in Debating:
"CaptJolee" wrote:this is the most stupidest  fourm I have ever seen in my entire life!!!! Oh, aren't you the one that wrote this?"I believe is that the government is allowing the aliens to abduct us in exchange they get alien technology in case of another nuclear war or something happens and that is what I believe"What makes you think you're an authority to decide what's stupid and what isn't?
reply about 4 hours
inkdeath
inkdeath posted in Debating:
Vegetables can have a peel and seeds...have you ever heard of bell peppers? I don't see why this question matters. Anyways, it's a vegetable. 
reply about 4 hours
Pink_Cool_Girl
Pink_Cool_Girl posted in General:
Don't let dreams be dreams;                              Let them be reality                                           
reply about 4 hours