- The hunter’s moon is the first full moon following the harvest moon.
- This year, moon watchers can also be on the lookout for shooting stars from the Draconid meteor shower.
- Other nicknames for October’s full moon include the falling leaves moon, the migrating moon, the drying rice moon and the freezing moon.
The hunter’s moon – the first full moon of fall – will rise Sunday, Oct. 9 in the eastern sky right around sunset.
October’s full moon is called the hunter’s moon because it’s the time of year when historically hunters began collecting food and storing it for the long and cold winter months ahead, according to the Old Farmer’s Almanac.
“Many moons ago, Native Americans named this bright moon for obvious reasons,” the Almanac said. “The leaves are falling from trees, the deer are fattened, and it’s time to begin storing up meat for the long winter ahead.”
Other nicknames for the full moon
Other nicknames for October’s full moon include the falling leaves moon, the migrating moon, the drying rice moon and the freezing moon.
The last full moon rose on Sept. 10, twelve days before the autumnal equinox, which marked the start of astronomical fall across the Northern Hemisphere, AccuWeather said. That full moon was known as the harvest moon, one of the most popular full moons of the year.
HARVEST MOON:A harvest moon will rise this weekend. What you need to know about the full moon.
Hunter’s moon follows the harvest moon
The harvest moon is the full moon closest to the September equinox. The hunter’s moon is the first full moon following the harvest moon.
The earliest use of the term “hunter’s moon,” cited in the Oxford English Dictionary, was from 1710.
What is the ‘moon illusion’?
As the moon drifts over the horizon around sunset, it may appear larger and more orange, according to the Almanac. “But don’t be fooled by the ‘moon illusion,’ which makes the moon appear bigger than it really is,” the Almanac said.
Two years ago, the hunter’s moon fell on Halloween night, the first time that a full moon was on the spooky holiday since 2001. That won’t occur again until 2039, according to AccuWeather.
Watch out for meteors too!
This year, moon watchers can also be on the lookout for shooting stars from the Draconid meteor shower on the evening of Saturday Oct. 8, although the bright moon’s glare will make it tough to spot the meteors.