After days of shoveling and scraping Connecticut residents may be happy to hear there’s been a prediction for an early spring. As WNPR’s Nancy Cohen reports, it came from Connecticut’s official state ground hog.
The Lutz Children’s Museum in Manchester takes in wild animals that have been injured. Including a female ground hog who bears the weighty title, "Connecticut Chuckles the Seventh". Early this morning she went outside, sniffed the air and looked around, but did not see her shadow, according to Bob Eckerd, the executive director of the museum.
“Our ground hogs have a 100% accuracy rating. They’ve never been wrong. So I think we can count on an early spring.”
Ground Hog Day was first celebrated by German immigrants in Pennsylvania in the 1800s. Back in Europe, the tradition involved removing a hibernating hedge hog from its burrow. If it was sunny the animal would go back inside for another six weeks of winter. But if it was cloudy, as it was today, the hedgehog would come out of hibernation signaling an early spring. A ground hog is the same thing as a wood chuck, a kind of rodent.
For WNPR, I’m Nancy Cohen.