New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio dropped Staten Island’s celebrity groundhog, Chuck, on Sunday.
In front of a crowd of onlookers at the State Island Zoo, Chuck predicted six more weeks of winter after he saw his shadow this morning.
No sooner did the mayor hold up the groundhog to show the crowd did Chuck spring from his hands, tumbling on his back amid gasps and screams from the audience.
His handler quickly grabbed Chuck, smiling as if everything was all right.
“Chuck has spoken, everyone. It’s a cold, hard reality, but live by the groundhog, die by the groundhog,” de Blasio quipped.
Chuck previously had a political run-in in 2009, when he bit former Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who grabbed the hibernating groundhog from his wooden shelter.
“I’m hoping we can start a new day, a relationship here,” de Blasio said Sunday. “I’m reaching out a hand to Chuck, and I hope he will consider shaking it rather than doing other things.”
The zoo says Chuck’s predictions have a 82 percent accuracy rate. His widely-known Pennsylvania counterpart Punxsutawney Phil also saw his shadow Sunday.