It's time to check out yourself how much you know about this shy,
lesser found met-marmot and the day so specially meant for it.
(To find the answers, hover your mouse over the groundhog following each question.
Answers also appear at the end of the quiz,in case Punxsutawney Phil carried them back into his burrow!)
For archived Trivia pages, be sure to visit our Trivia Vault!
Groundhog Day Trivia
1. What event was also widely celebrated on Groundhog Day?
B) Mardi Gras
2. What's so special about Feb. 2?
A) it’s the vernal equinox
B) it’s a “cross-quarter” day
C) there’s nothing special about it
D) it’s statistically the coldest day of the year
3. If February 2 is clear and sunny, the groundhog is likely to
A) go for a grassy feast
B) turn cartwheels
C) slip back to his burrow
D) bask in the sunlight
4. Which one of the following introduced Groundhog Day customs in America?
A) the Germans
B) the Dutch
C) the Russians
D) the French
5. With which of the following, you think, is the groundhog closely associated?
6. The groundhog celebrates the arrival of spring with a feast. Which of the following will it enjoy?
B) freshly killed grasshoppers
C) green tender grasses
D) a bowl of battered eggs
7. A groundhog is also called a
B) prairie dog
8. Where did the name “woodchuck” come from?
A) descriptive of the critter chucking wood
B) the Indian legend of “Wojak, the groundhog”
C) the animal was named by one Charles (Chuck) Wood, an early settler of Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania
D) describing how the animal looks like a log when standing up on hind legs
9. Which of the following would you like to call the capital of the groundhogs?
A) Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania
B) Unadilla, Nebraska
C) New York, New York
D) Sun Prairie, Wisconsin
10. What is Punxsutawney's groundhog named?
11. What is the Punxsutawney groundhog's wife's name?
12. Where does the name Punxsutawney mean?
B) “town of the sandflies”
C) “shadows in winter”
D) “spring has sprung”
13. How do officials know it is really Phil at Gobbler's Knob?
A) he is moved from his home to Gobbler Knob for the ceremony
B) he has an ear tag, which is checked for certainty
C) he wears a collar with an ID tag
D) he has distinctive markings
14. Name the state university that has made a stuffed groundhog as the representative of its geology department?
A) Texas, Austin
B) Oklahoma, Oklahoma City
C) New York, Buffalo
D) Michigan, Ann Arbor
15. Which state has made General Beauregard Lee its official Weather Prognosticator?
C) South Carolina
16. When is the groundhog likely to see its longest shadow on a sunny day?
A) at 8:00 a.m.
B) at 11:00 a.m.
C) at 1:00 p.m.
D) at 4:00 p.m.
17. How much wood could a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?
A) about 700 pounds
B) about 50 pounds
C) about 225 pounds
D) about 475 pounds
18. Why did groundhog fur coats go out of fashion?
A) they were replaced by ermine
B) they never were in fashion
C) they attracted flies
D) they smelled bad
19. 19. What's going on in the groundhog’s burrow all winter?
A) a huge feast from stored food
B) not much
C) breeding and raising the young
D) digging tunnels
20. What's the wake-up call for a groundhog?
B) the Reveille
D) amount of daylight
1. C) Candlemas
2. B) it’s a “cross-quarter” day - Celestially speaking, Groundhog Day on Feb. 2 is a "cross-quarter" day, about halfway between the winter solstice in December and the vernal equinox in March, and is celebrated in some cultures as the mid point of winter. It's not far from the time many groundhogs end their hibernation anyway, around the second week of February. To Farrah Fawcett, Tom Smothers, James Joyce, Graham Nash, Christie Brinkley and Wiarton Willie's handler, Sam Brouwer it would be special, as they were all born on Groundhog Day!
3. C) slip back to his burrow
4. A) the Germans
5. B) rodent
6. C) green tender grasses - Groundhogs in the wild eat succulent green plants, such as dandelion greens, clover, plantain and grasses. They also are tempted by nearby gar den vegetables. At Cornell, they dine on Agway Woodchuck Chow, a similar formulation to rabbit feed but in larger-sized pellets. Woodchucks binge and purposefully put on weight in the summer, reaching their maximum mass in late August. They become lethargic and prepare for hibernation in October. By February, hibernating woodchucks have lost as much as half their body weight.
7. C) woodchuck - Woodchuck and groundhog are common terms for the same animal, the rodent with the scientific name of Marmota monax. Most closely related to squirrels, woodchucks actually can climb trees and also swim.
8. B) the Indian legend of “Wojak, the groundhog”
9. D) Sun Prairie, Wisconsin - Jimmy the Groundhog is the official weather critter from Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, the true Groundhog Capital of the World according to the natives. Punxsutawney Phil, the world's most famous weather prognosticating groundhog, is from Pennsylvania; Unadilla Bill hails from Unadilla, Nebraska; and Pothole Pete is New York City's official groundhog.
10. B) Phil - The groundhog's full name is actually "Punxsutawney Phil, Seer of Seers, Sage of Sages, Prognosticator of Prognosticators and Weather Prophet Extraordinary." It was so proclaimed by the "Punxsutawney Groundhog Club" in 1887, the same year they declared Punxsutawney to be the weather capital of the world. Phil started making predictions in 1887 and has become an American institution. According to Punxsutawney records, Phil sees his shadow on February 2nd about 85% of the time. In recent years, it could be argued that Punxsutawney Phil both does and doesn't see his shadow. The news reports clearly show that Phil is removed from his hole before the sun even comes up, meaning he could not possibly see his shadow. However, because of all the lights from the television cameras, he can't help but see several shadows. So it's all dependent on whether or not the light he sees is natural or artificial.
11. 7. C) Philomena - His first wife, Phyllis, died in 1978. Phil is now apparently happy in his marriage to his second wife Philomena, which was performed at a ceremony presided over by a county judge. This was an arranged marriage, with Philomena coming from the extreme southeastern corner of the state.
12. B) “town of the sandflies” - Punxsutawney was first settled by the Delaware Indians in 1723 and its name comes from the Indian name for the location "ponksad-uteney" which means the "town of the sandflies." Punxsutawney is located in Western Pennsylvania, about 80 miles northeast of
13. A) he is moved from his home to Gobbler Knob for the ceremony - For most of the year, Phil lives in a climate-controlled home at the Punxsutawney Library. He is taken to Gobbler's Knob and placed in a heated burrow underneath a simulated tree stump on stage before being pulled out at 7:25 am on Groundhog Day, February 2, to make his prediction.
14. C) New York, Buffalo - Ridge Lea Larry is a stuffed Groundhog who represents the Geology Department of the State University of New York at Buffalo.
16. D) at 4:00 p.m.
17. A) about 700 pounds - Compared to beavers, groundhogs/woodchucks are not adept at moving timber, although some will chew wood. (At Cornell, woodchucks that gnaw their wooden nest boxes are given scraps of 2-by-4 lumber.) A wildlife biologist once measured the inside volume of a typical woodchuck burrow and estimated that -- if wood filled the hole instead of dirt -- the industrious animal would have chucked about 700 pounds' worth.
18. B) they never were in fashion - Groundhog fur never was in vogue, partly because it is not particularly thick and warm, and because the fur's grizzled grey-brown appearance is more appealing to others of their species than to people. Groundhog hairs are used for tying trout flies, such as the 'Chuck Caddis, and early American Indians once used sturdy woodchuck hides for soles of moccasins.
19.B) not much - Groundhogs go into profound hibernation, one to a burrow, with at least two doorways. Hibernation greatly reduces their metabolic rate, and their body temperature drops to just a few degrees above ambient temperature. Groundhogs can lose 50 per cent of their body weight in hibernation. Because their hibernaculum, the deepest portion of the burrow where they hibernate, is below frost line, that produces a body temperature as low as 39-40 degrees F.
20. D) amount of daylight - The groundhog's internal clock is believed to be affected by annual changes in the amount of daylight. Hormonal responses to cyclic changes in production of melatonin, a sleep-related hormone, are thought by some to be the signal to wake up. Males emerge earlier than females each spring.