7. Groundhogs Can Predict the Arrival of Spring
It’s the only mammal to have its own day named after it and as legend goes, every Feb. 2, the groundhog emerges from hibernation. If it sees its shadow, six more weeks of winter lie ahead, and if not, spring is on the way! The most famous groundhog of all is Punxsutawney Phil, named in honor of his hometown in Pennsylvania where he acts as the spokesperson for all groundhogs. So how much stock should you put in his predictions? In reality, groundhogs prepare for six months of hibernation by eating up to one-third of their weight on a daily basis. When they emerge, they actually do respond to changes in light and temperature, two factors that play a part in determining the forecast. MYTH VERDICT: TRUE
6. Are Bats Really Blind?
This saying has become a fixture of everyday vernacular and the assumption likely developed because bats primarily use a form of sonar to navigate through dark areas and avoid obstacles. However, their eyes, while small and sometimes poorly developed, are also completely functional, not to mention the fact that they have excellent hearing and sense of smell. Perhaps the saying should be changed to “Keen as a Bat”? MYTH VERDICT: FALSE
5. You Can’t Teach an Old Dog New Tricks
Just because a dog is approaching its more senior years doesn’t mean it can’t learn a new thing or two. In fact, with approximately 15 minutes of training every day for two weeks straight, even the most stubborn dog can usually learn how to sit, stay, fetch, roll over or whatever your heart desires, regardless of age. The saying is meant to be taken less literally about dogs and more about people — specifically, the types who have been set in their ways for so long that changing their behavior would be (to quote the rock band Chicago) a hard habit to break. MYTH VERDICT: FALSE