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Shubenacadie Sam says 6 more weeks of winter for Nova Scotians

The beloved groundhog predicted cold and snow weather conditions are here to stay

3 min read
caption Shubenacadie Sam is held after emerging on Groundhog Day 2023.
Communications Nova Scotia

SHUBENACADIE, N.S. Shubenacadie Sam, Nova Scotia’s beloved groundhog, is predicting six more weeks of winter.

After slowly creeping out of her burrow backwards and rustling around the frozen grass, Sam saw her shadow on Thursday, signaling more snow, wind and cold.

Dozens of onlookers huddled in the cold feeling like -18 C with the windchill according to Environment Canada to watch Sam emerge once the clock turned to 8 a.m. at Shubenacadie Wildlife Park.


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@signalhfx It’s Groundhog Day. What is Shubenacadie Sam’s annual forecast? #groundhogday #winter #novascotia #fyp ♬ original sound – The Signal

When a groundhog leaves its hole on Feb. 2 and sees its own shadow there will be another six weeks of winter, explains, and if there is no shadow an early spring is expected.

Each year, Sam is the first prognosticator to make a prediction for groundhog day across North America, said the park’s veterinarian, Dr. Andrew Morrison, who hosted the event. 

Ontario’s go-to groundhog Wiarton Willie is predicting the opposite: an early spring.

Philadelphia’s Punxsutawney Phil is on board with Sam in calling for more winter.

Morrison said she’s been doing predictions through live-stream for the past two years due to the pandemic.

caption Shubenacadie Sam predicted six more weeks of winter after seeing her shadow at the Shubenacadie Wildlife Park on Feb. 2.
Brad Chandler

Sam’s prediction won’t seem too far off this weekend. Environment Canada is predicting temperatures will drop to -24 C Friday night in the Halifax Regional Municipality.

Adding onto her celebrity status, Sam was recently featured as the main character in a new children’s novel entitled Groundhog Night: Shubenacadie Sam’s Shadow. The story follows Sam on Feb. 1 where she “discovers other animals have shadows, too,” its description reads.

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Brad Chandler

Brad Chandler is an aspiring video journalist from Cape Breton, Nova Scotia with a special interest in sports reporting and broadcasting. He...

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