Saturday, February 2, 2008

How Much Ground Can a Groundhog Hog?

In the United States, February 2nd is celebrated as Groundhog Day. According to legends that sprung from old European celebrations of Candlemas Day, if a groundhog awakes from his hibernating slumber and sees his shadow, 6 more weeks of wintry weather will follow.

Groundhogs, also known as woodchucks, are members of the marmot family. The adults range in size from a foot and a half to 2 feet in length, not counting their tail that can average an additional 9 inches in length. Their diet of plants and their large burrows, raise the hackles of most farmers.

On June 13, 1987, the US Postal Service released a pane of stamps commemorating wildlife of North America. It is a beautiful pane of 50 stamps with a variety of animals depicted. Here is the woodchuck ("groundhog") 22-cent stamp from that series.

And in case your wondering, the title of this entry was derived from a popular US tongue-twister -- "How much wood can a woodchuck chuck, if a woodchuck could chuck wood."

No comments: