- Associated Press - Monday, February 2, 2015

MARION TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) - Murray doesn’t have good news for Michigan. But maybe she can try again tomorrow.

The 8-month-old female groundhog named after actor Bill Murray, whose movies include “Groundhog Day” about a man repeatedly re-living Feb. 2, predicted six more weeks of winter after seeing her shadow Monday morning at the Howell Conference and Nature Center.

She was standing in for Woody the Woodchuck, the state’s official groundhog. Woody is recovering from a respiratory infection, center officials said.

Murray stayed in her house, which center staff members interpreted as a reluctance to emerge and see her shadow. The not-so-scientific forecast comes after a storm dropped 1½ feet of snow on parts of Michigan’s Lower Peninsula.

“I think that given the deep snow we had to venture through this morning, she’s probably right in her prediction,” center spokeswoman April Gasbarre said.

She said Murray did a wonderful job filling in for her ailing colleague, who has been making bold and mostly correct predictions since 1999.

Murray’s prediction falls in line with that of the day’s most famous and furry prognosticator: Pennsylvania’s Punxsutawney Phil also predicted six more weeks of winter, according to his handlers.

A German legend has it that if the furry rodent sees his or her shadow on Feb. 2, winter will last another six weeks. If not, spring comes early.




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