Zoo Groundhog Calls It For the 49ers
February 02, 2013
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (February 2, 2013) – The Little Rock Zoo’s
groundhog, “Mid-South Maple,” forwent the traditional weather prediction for
Groundhog Day and instead picked the San Francisco 49ers as her pick for
tomorrow’s Super Bowl.
In a morning ceremony earlier today, Maple was set down by
her keeper in between two “burrows,” or decorated kennels, representing each team
and paused intently for several moments before making a decision.
“It was obvious that Maple took this decision very
seriously,” said Zoo Director Mike Blakely. “Maple has been studying-up on the
teams and watching a lot of ESPN the last few weeks. Maple has been studying
the stats and watching the players in order to make this important
prediction. There are two great teams
playing but in the end she favored the 49ers,” added Blakely.
After a long pause and looking both ways, the groundhog
slowly walked over to the burrow labeled with the 49ers logo and settled
Blakely added that Maple’s initial reluctance to pick a team
could indicate a tied game in the final inning with the 49ers pulling out a win
After Maple made her prediction, Little Rock Mayor Mark
Stodola read Mid-South Maple’s official Super Bowl proclamation. The groundhog said:
around the corner…that’s easy peasy
Dear Punxsutawney, a truly gifted hog
I can predict things that are harder, you dog!
Ravens versus Niners, tomorrow we’ll see
I’m sure I know just who it will be
Younger brother, Jim, has something to prove
You can bet the Niners will get in the groove
Their defense is one of the best
They’ll beat the Ravens and ace this test
Kaepernick can throw and run
He’ll make sure this deal is done
The 49ers will win this game
Thanks for listening, I’m glad you came”
Maple’s keepers were somewhat surprised at her prediction
stating that in previous practice sessions the groundhog favored the Ravens
“Maple must have done some last-minute research that led her
to the conclusion that the 49ers would prevail in this Super Bowl,” said keeper
Maple, a one-year-old groundhog, is a part of the Little
Rock Zoo’s EdZOOcation Outreach program.
She makes special appearances on Zoo grounds and in classrooms to teach
children and adults alike the importance of conservation.
A gifted groundhog with many talents, Maple is an avid
sports fan and always says on Groundhog Day that spring is just around the
Founded in 1926 in
War Memorial Park in the heart of Little Rock, the Little Rock Zoo is
accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. Look for the AZA logo whenever you visit a
zoo or aquarium as your assurance that you are supporting a facility dedicated
to providing excellent care for animals, a great experience for you and a
better future for all living things.
With its more than 200 accredited members, AZA is a leader in global
wildlife conservation and your link to helping animals in their native
habitats. For more information, visit