Balzac Billy doesn't see shadow

Billy is a gopher or a Richardson Ground Squirrel – a common species in Alberta.

Alberta’s Groundhog day predictor Balzac Billy resides in Balzac, 24km north of Calgary and provided great news for all Albertans - a short winter.

The origins of Balzac Billy can be traced to the 1970s, when Balzac’s then-mayor, Merle Osborne befriended a Richardson Ground Squirrel. According to Balzac Community Association, a radio station was instrumental in making Billy famous worldwide.

In 2021 and 2022, Billy predicted long winter or in the groundhog day language “six more weeks of winter.” Legend has it that, on February 2nd, if the groundhog emerges from its burrow, sees its shadow, winter will last for another six weeks. If it doesn’t see its shadow, winter will be shorter.

However this year Billy didn't see his shadow meaning a short winter is upon us! 



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