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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
rich r Groundhog.Day.Songs (36) RE: Groundhog.Day.Songs 07 Feb 99

It seems most of the confusion in this thread has been the distinction between groundhog and ground hog. While both of them can be et, only one of them was really made for eatin'. The woodchuck (Marmota monax) has also been dubbed the whistle pig. In the mountains of western North America similar animals are called marmots or rockchucks. There are the yellow bellied marmot (M. flaviventris) and the hoary marmot (M. caligata). At one time it was illegal to kill woodchucks in the state of Pennsylvania. The logic went as follows, groundhogs dig burrows, rabbits used the burrows for winter shelter and thus more survived to serve as targets for young and old gunslingers. The state thought that the more rabbits the more satisfied hunters and the more license fees to the state. Out here on the prairies, "gophers" (i.e. ground squrrels and prairie dogs) are the preferred victims of the happy shootists. In a bit of trivia, Russian marmot fur was sold as Brazilian mink, but its wearing value is only 20% that of otter. Work that into your next coffeebreak discussion.

What was odd about Wiarton Willie is I saw him on TV laid out in a small coffin. Since he lived in a hole, they must have dug him out of his hole to put him in a box and then dug a hole in which to put him and the box.

Since there was certain snowcover in that part of Ontario, I wonder if Wiarton Willie let out a white squall just before he expired.

rich r

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