Groundhog Day 2014: Punxsutawney Phil Sees His Shadow, Predicts 6 More Weeks of Winter
By Gopi Chandra Kharel | February 3, 2014 12:43 AM EST
So what did Punxsutawney Phil predict?
Well, the most famous prognosticating rodent in the world has just predicted that there will be six more weeks of winter in the United States.
Syrocuse.com reported from the ground that Phil saw his shadow after he popped up from his borrow at around 7:28am but went back in soon. His handlers declared that it is indeed another six weeks of cold.
Phil made his weather prediction in front of thousands of onlookers at Gobbler's Knob in the tiny western Pennsylvania town of Punxsutawney, located about 56 miles northeast of Pittsburgh.
According to the curious folklore, the groundhog emerges every year on 2 February from his temporary home. If Phil sees his shadow and returns to his hole, he has predicted six more weeks of winter. But if the quirky animal does not see his shadow, it means he has predicted an early spring.
The day (2 February) Phil makes his famous prognostication is known as 'Groundhog Day' in the US and Canada. Phil is considered the world's most powerful prognosticating rodent, and during the rest of the year, when is not tasked with the job of forecasting the weather, he lives in the town library with his "wife" Phyllis.
Scientific data indicate that the entire story of Phil's prognostication is nothing more than a way of celebrating folklore; and there is no actual correlation between Phil's prediction and the changes in the weather. The National Climatic Data Center has described Phil's forecasts as "average, inaccurate" and has said: "The groundhog has shown no talent for predicting the arrival of spring, especially in recent years".
However, the Groundhog Day organizers have claimed that Phil is accurate in predicting weather 75 to 90 percent of the time. A study of weather data over several decades for 13 cities across Canada, on the other hand, has revealed that the groundhog's predictions were correct only 37 percent of the time.
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