Champaign, IL (WCIA) In this high tech world, we have lots of fancy scientific tools that help us predict the weather. But we shouldn’t ignore what mother nature’s clues may give us. Time for the wooly worm forecast! Judy Fraser is here to get us ready for the season ahead.
There are a couple of ways Judy tells us about the winter ahead through nature:
Squirrels (busy means harsh winter)
Leaf Falls (late=harsh)
Wooly Worms= their coat, color, and rings or bands.
They have thirteen segments each representing the 13 weeks of winter. All that and the thickness of its coat are all determining factors in predicting the winter season.
This wooly worm tradition is a mountain custom stretching back several centuries when Native Americans taught the settlers how to read the coat of the Wooly Worm. Judy has been collecting the Woolies with the help of the viewers for some 30 years. They have about an 80% accuracy rate.
The general rule of thumb is the darker the color, the colder the winter. When a worm has a band of dark color at its head and tail but a lighter band of brown in the middle, it means a cold start and finish with milder weather in between. Spiky protrusions mean ice. If they’re moving south… brrrr!
The 2019-2020 Report
80 % Black/Dark Brown
12% White or Light Colored
8% Orange, Multicolored or Light Brown.
2018 – 2019 “Wooly Worm Forecast:
“Equal Opportunity Winter”
Mild at the start but frequent and serious cold shots late..
Keep the shovels handy but not a big year for snow..
After careful “Worm” study and consideration
2019-2020 Wooly Worm Winter Forecast
Wooly Worm Say…”Get Out Your Woolies”
A Cold, Cold Winter…Artic Blasts Included…
Shovels Polished…Accumulating Moderate Snows At Times…