What are the nicknames for each full moon?

    Throughout the year, each full moon has a different name — you may even have heard of them before! The buck moon, harvest moon and cold moon are probably the most widely known — but what’s their purpose and where do they come from?

    Are they around just to sound cool — or do they have a historical significance?

    The nicknames for the moon were tied to the seasons

    The Farmer’s Almanac is an annual American periodical that began circulation in 1818. It is most widely known for its long-range weather predictions but also contains plenty of information in calendars about the moon cycles. Primarily, that is because, in colonial America, there was a huge significance for agriculture — knowing when to plant, when to tend to crops and then harvest were crucial aspects of daily life.

    Native Americans, who had spent centuries of their own watching the seasons and tending to the land, taught many of the full moon names to the colonials. While each full moon may have had a multitude of other names depending on the region, tribe or language, the Farmer’s Almanac standardized them to spread the information more widely.

    Here’s a quick list outlining the top name for each month’s full moon!

    January: full wolf moon

    During this time, the sound of howling wolves was often heard. This was to define territory and connect to their packs. This period was prime for hunting.

    February: full snow moon

    In many upper regions of North America, snow tends to fall quite heavily in February — which is why this full moon was aptly named!

    March: full worm moon

    Slowly, as the winter starts to break and the world begins to thaw, nature’s activity starts to teem with life! Earthworms within the ground and larvae on tree bark are especially noticeable now.

    April: full pink moon

    With spring beginning to thrive, this full moon alludes to the appearance of fresh, pink wildflowers.

    A full pink supermoon graces the sky in April 2020.
    Getty Images

    May: full flower moon

    Flowers and fields bloom with life as the world has returned to abundance! Happy spring!

    June: full strawberry moon

    In June, strawberries were ripened and ready for gathering — particularly in the northeastern United States.

    July: full buck moon

    By July, a full male deer (known as a buck) had grown its largest antlers to display.

    full moon
    A full moon in the Northern Hemisphere as seen from a private observatory in central Europe.
    Getty Images

    August: full sturgeon moon

    According to tradition, the sturgeon of the Great Lakes were especially eager to be caught during this particular full moon.

    September: full corn moon (or harvest moon)

    At this time, the harvesting of corn often took place.

    October: full hunter’s moon (or harvest moon)

    In October, game were fattening up for winter, making it a suitable time to lay traps and hunt for the approaching winter months.

    November: full beaver moon

    At this time, beavers were readying for winter by building their lodges. This was an ideal time to hunt for these animals.

    December: full cold moon

    Finally, as the year comes to a close and the winter strengthens its hold once again, this full moon was named for the frigid temperatures the continent was set to experience.

    Are there other kinds of names for the full moons?

    Yes! However, those are more closely tied to astrology. For instance, a blood moon is actually a lunar eclipse, whereas a blue moon is when a second full moon happens simultaneously in the same month — but doesn’t tie to the historical agricultural names per the season.


    Kyle Thomas is a globally recognized pop culture astrologer who has been featured in Cosmopolitan Magazine, ABC Television, Hulu, Bustle, Elite Daily, House Beautiful, Marie Claire, YahooNews, MSN and more. He is known for his cosmic guidance for celebrities, business executives and prominent influencers. His work harnesses the power of the stars in regards to entertainment lifestyle and trends affecting people worldwide. For more information, visit KyleThomasAstrology.com.




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