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Posted on Wed, Mar 20, 2013 : 4:42 p.m.

Groundhog apology: Howell Nature Center says its woodchuck is sorry for predicting an early spring

By Cindy Heflin

Remember back on Feb. 2 when the groundhog promised us an early spring?

It turned out to be a very bad forecast, and for that, a little woodchuck in Livingston County is apologizing.


File photo

Woody is the resident groundhog forecaster at the Howell Nature Center. As Michigan residents endured temperatures in the 20s, scattered snow and windy conditions, the center issued this statement Wednesday, the first day of spring: “Like all female woodchuck prognosticators, Woody is not afraid to admit when she's wrong,”

Woody might take comfort in the fact that her more-famous counterpart, Punxsutawney Phil, also got the forecast wrong. But apparently, she’s so down about the whole thing that she’s grown timid about predicting anything.

“Although she correctly picked the Baltimore Ravens to win the Super Bowl, she is avoiding March Madness in its entirety,” the center said.

But lest anyone think Woody has no powers of prognostication, the nature center pointed to a list of her past predictions. Including this year, she’s only been wrong four times since 1998.

See a video of Woody making her prediction below:


Bob W

Fri, Mar 22, 2013 : 10:36 a.m.

Who's Woody? ;o)


Thu, Mar 21, 2013 : 9:31 p.m.

It's ok sweetie, we still love you!


Thu, Mar 21, 2013 : 6:51 p.m.

RE: "Like all female woodchuck prognosticators, Woody is not afraid to admit when she's wrong." Does that mean that male woodchuck prognosticators are afraid to admit when they're wrong? That sounds kinda unfair... and sexist. Woody [not one of Ann Arbor's favorite names] like all woodchucks, is a member of the Sciuridae family (i.e. squirrels). Since Ann Arbor is sometimes referred to the City of Trees, Nuts and Squirrels, it's therefore fitting that this animal be kept as our city mascot and ensconced in City Hall.

Dog Guy

Thu, Mar 21, 2013 : 4:40 p.m.

Shape up Woody! Ground hog is what Polish sausage is made of.

Simon Green

Thu, Mar 21, 2013 : 11:01 a.m.

I'm not convinced. She just doesn't want to be turned into owl feed.

going nowhere

Wed, Mar 20, 2013 : 10:10 p.m.

it must be the road commissions fault.....everything else is...


Fri, Mar 22, 2013 : 12:20 p.m.

Generally, critters are smart enough not to use Washtenaw Co roads. Fields, forests, ditches and the like are in much better repair. Only the human species will do the same thing again and again and expect a different result. Now, excuse me please as I need to go to town using the same pot hole laden, muddy mess of a road.

Andy T

Wed, Mar 20, 2013 : 9:23 p.m.

Also, disregard this rodent's stock picks, he completely ignores the Nikkei index.


Wed, Mar 20, 2013 : 9:11 p.m.

Least some folks are honest.

Sam S Smith

Wed, Mar 20, 2013 : 8:56 p.m.

It was the humans who got it wrong--not Woody!


Wed, Mar 20, 2013 : 8:55 p.m.

Ok.....I just got a good chuckle.Kinda nice not to see a bummer article from time to time