Lancashire Times
A Voice of the Free Press
Jan Harris
Deputy Group Editor
1:00 AM 28th October 2023

Is The Hunter's Moon In October Or November?

Photo by Luca on Unsplash
Photo by Luca on Unsplash
The Hunter’s Moon is the full moon after the Harvest Moon and normally appears in the month of October.

In the Northern Hemisphere the Hunter's Moon in 2023 rises on Saturday 28 October. Every four years it can appear in November but traditionally the Hunter's Moon refers to the full moon in October.

During the month of October the deer which had fattened up during the summer ready for the winter were tracked by the hunters using the light from the autumn moonlight, hence the name of Hunter’s Moon. The time between sunset and moonrise during the months of September and October is normally 30 minutes later each day and so farmers and hunters get more light to finish their work during these months.

Photo by Asa Rodger on Unsplash
Photo by Asa Rodger on Unsplash
Why a full moon?

A full moon occurs when the moon's earth-facing side is completely illuminated by the sun. Scientists say that when you see the moon looking really large as it rises in the sky your brain is actually playing a trick on you.

There are many reasons as to why this is, but the main theory is that when the moon is low on the horizon it can be compared to earthly things, like buildings and trees, and this is why it seems huge.

Image by Susan Cipriano from Pixabay
Image by Susan Cipriano from Pixabay
Tips for seeing a full moon
Moons rise in the east and set in the west
If viewing from inside your house it is best to turn off lights so as to view the night sky
If outside it is best to go somewhere high so you can see the moon rise above the horizon
Viewing outside is the best and away from street lights and light pollution

Can a full moon affect your sleep?

Image by Myriams-Fotos from Pixabay
Image by Myriams-Fotos from Pixabay
Because the moon affects the tides, it is often said that full moons can also affect us. Issues with our immune system can be caused by lack of sleep or disturbed sleep.

Some people find falling asleep harder during a full moon along with less time spent in a deep sleep. This lack of sleep can sometimes cause people to have worse headaches often called 'moon migraines'.

Full moons in 2023
6 January - Wolf moon
5 February - Snow moon
7 March - Worm moon
6 April - Pink moon
5 May - Flower moon
3 June - Strawberry moon
3 July - Buck moon (supermoon)
1 August - Sturgeon moon (supermoon)
30/31 August - Blue moon (supermoon)
29 September - Harvest moon (supermoon)
28 October - Hunter's moon
27 November - Beaver moon
26 December - Cold moon

Why do full moons get different names?

Every month of the year there is a full moon which illuminates the sky, each of which is given a different name.

Photo by Mark Tegethoff on Unsplash
Photo by Mark Tegethoff on Unsplash
There are a total of 12 full moon phases during the annual lunar cycle plus the occasional Blue Moon and each full moon has a unique name.

The traditional names given to the full moons during the year are derived from the North American traditions. Many of these ancient moon names have been given based on the behaviour of the plants, animals, or weather during that month.

However the full moon names we now use also have Anglo-Saxon and Germanic roots.

The full moon in October should be visible in the sky after sunset for a couple of days either side of the peak. Let's hope the sky stays clear for a few days so we can see the Hunter's Moon.

The next full moon will rise on Monday 27 November and is the Beaver Moon, followed by the Cold Moon on Tuesday 26 December.