Giant Hunter’s Moon looms over the Northern Hemisphere

Giant Hunter’s Moon looms over the Northern Hemisphere and is captured in spectacular photographsThe Hunter’s Moon is preceded by the Harvest Moon, both named for their uses providing light into the nightHunters and farmers would use light of full moon to harvest crops and hunt prey, preparing for winterName is given to the Full Moon closest…

Giant Hunter’s Moon looms over the Northern Hemisphere and is captured in spectacular photographs

  • The Hunter’s Moon is preceded by the Harvest Moon, both named for their uses providing light into the night
  • Hunters and farmers would use light of full moon to harvest crops and hunt prey, preparing for winter
  • Name is given to the Full Moon closest to the September equinox, the start of autumn in astronomy

By Milly Vincent For Mailonline

Published: | Updated: 11:37, 14 October 2019

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A spectacular Hunter’s moon was seen over parts of the UK last night, illuminating the sky with a red hue. 

While it dominated horizons with its glow the full moon was one of the smallest this year, as it reached the most distant point from earth in its elliptical orbit.

The particular name is given to the full moon which is closest to the September equinox, the start of autumn in astronomy.

Also known as Sanguine Moon the occurrence takes place annually, most commonly in October, but falling in November once every four years – depending on the Lunar calendar. 

A Hunter’s Moon (also known as Sanguine or Blood Moon) rising above Ely Cathedral in Cambridgeshire on Sunday evening

Night Kayakers take to the water and observe the Hunter’s Moon rising at Fountainstown, Co. Cork, Ireland

The full Hunter’s Moon rising over the sea and beach huts in Minster on Sea, Kent

Preceded by the Harvest Moon the two phases are named after their uses before the invent of electricity. 

Hunters and farmers would use the light of the full moon to harvest crops and track prey, stockpiling for the winter.     

Traditionally this also meant preserving the meat they caught to keep them going through the cold months. 

Other names for the celestial sight are the Travel Moon and the Dying Grass Moon. 

The October Hunter’s Moon over prehistoric monument Stonehenge last night

The Hunter’s Moon rose at 99 per cent behind the Bass Rock which sits off North Berwick on the coast of East Lothian, Scotland, Saturday night

The full moon sets behind the forests of the Taunus region near Frankfurt, Germany, early Monday, Oct. 14, 2019

A view of the Selimiye Mosque and Uc Serefeli Camii (the Mosque with Three Balconies) are seen during full moon in Edirne, Turkey, last night

Migrants take a break from the Moria Refugee Camp to watch the full moon rise at Panagiouda Port, a short walk from the over crowded camp on October 13, 2019 in Panagiouda, Greece

 WHAT IS A HUNTER’S MOON?

The Hunter’s Moon follows the Harvest Moon, which is the full Moon closest to the autumnal equinox in late September. 

A Hunter’s moon, much like a Harvest Moon, has a red hue due to the short time between sunset and moon rise.

During the month of October and autumn period the Moon typically rises around 50 minutes later each day, but during a Hunter’s Moon (and Harvest Moon) they rise 30 minutes later on each successive night.

As the time between the sunset and moonrise is short hunters could enjoy lighter nights enabling them to catch animals. 

The Moon’s elliptical orbit causes the short period of time between the sunset and moonrise due to the angle of the Moon with the narrow horizon.

 The Hunter’s Moon is generally not bigger or brighter than any of the other full moons. Thus, the only difference between it and other full moons is the that the time between sunset and moonrise is shorter.   

Throughout the year, the moon appears over the horizon about 50 minutes later each days, on average. 

But for several days around the fall equinox, the moon rises only about 30 minutes later in the US, an just 10 to 20 minutes later throughout Canada and Europe. 

While it might sound like not much of a difference, but the shift brings noticeably bright nights. The full moon will rise almost immediately after the sun has set, first appearing as a huge, orange-colored orb around dusk.

And with shorter periods between sunset and moon rise, farmers are able to work harvesting the crops and hunting animals later on into the night, hence the Harvest and Hunter’s Moons names.

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