Full Moon Name Listing

While the sun tends to look the same all the time, the moon goes through very interesting size changes over the course of the year. It's no suprise that ancient people began to give names to the moon in each phase of its cycle, to help identify the changes!

Here are the full moons that happen each year.

In general, the moon names came from what the people would tend to be doing during that time of year. For example, June being Strawberry Moon is because most people harvest their strawberries in June.

January - Wolf Moon
Time of wolf packs coming down out of the forest

February - Snow Moon
Time of the deepest snows

March - Worm Moon / Sap Moon
Spring begins to arrive

April - Pink Moon / Fish Moon
Time of new growing flowers and fish coming to spawn

May - Flower Moon / Milk Moon
Spring is really here now!

June - Strawberry Moon / Rose Moon
Summertime, and the livin' is easy

July - Buck Moon / Thunder Moon
Time for the deer to grow antlers and the thunderstorms to arrive

August - Sturgeon Moon / Red Moon
The heat of full summer

September - Harvest Moon
The full light of the moon nearest the equinox provides great harvesting of crops. Note if this moon isn't nearest the equinox (i.e. if October is) this becomes the Corn Moon.

October - Corn Moon / Hunter's Moon
Usually October is the Corn Moon - but occasionally the October moon is the one closest to the Autumn Equinox, in which case it becomes the Harvest Moon.

November - Beaver Moon
Beaver furs were a very important commodity for early settlers.

December - Cold Moon / Long Nights Moon
The longest nights happen now - and you see the moon for the longest period of time.

If there are two full moons in a given month - which happens rarely, since moons cycle every 28 days and most months are only 30 days long - that second full moon is called a Blue Moon.

Note that the Harvest Moon moves. It is whichever full moon falls closest to the Autumn Equinox (around September 23rd). It can be either in September or October. The Harvest Moon is always the biggest moon of the year.

Astronomy Information Pages