Daily News Where you Live
Velda says we're in for an early spring
Get ready for an early spring.
Velda, the Oregon Zoos weather-predicting hedgehog, didn't see her shadow Tuesday morning, Feb. 2, meaning the Northwests winter weather could soon be wrapping up.
Oh, yeah, Punxsutawney Phil, the dean of weather-predicting rodents, also didn't see his shadow Tuesday, so theres a good chance they both might be right.
Hedgehogs are the real weather experts of the animal world, said zoo Curator Michael Illig, who supervised the zoos Hedgehog Day festivities. Punxsutawney Phil and his ilk are relative newcomers to the game. When European immigrants to the United States realized their new home didnt have hedgehogs, they turned to the groundhog out of necessity. But Velda is bringing the holiday back to its origins.
Considering the track record of the zoos hedgehog prognosticators though, tradition and cuteness might have to count for a lot. Last year though, our hedgehog Whiskers J. did predict an early spring, which was definitely accurate for this region, Illig said. We had the warmest winter on record.
Velda is one of five hedgehogs born at the zoo in 2014. She made her forecasting debut on Tuesday.