The Hunter's Moon is the full moon usually observed in October. It will occur on Saturday, October 28 2023 at 4:24 PM EDT.
The October Full Moon is called Hunter's moon because it was the ideal time for hunting in the olden days. This is the second full moon of the Autumn season.
The Hunter's Moon follows the Harvest Moon (the full moon closest to the autumnal equinox).
The meaning behind the name
The October Full Moon is observed at a time that is perfect for hunting animals. This is because most mammals and birds eat a lot and fatten themselves to prepare for the upcoming winter which stays for a long duration. This is the peak time for their growth so they are usually meatier.
The bright Hunter's Full Moon allowed for easy hunting of the prey. Men hunted, slaughtered, and stocked up animal meat for survival to prepare for the harsh winters during this time.
The Harvest Moon, which precedes Hunter's moon, was the time when farmers harvested their crops, clearing the field. Thus, the following month was even more ideal for hunting. This was because men could spot deer and other animals, who had come to find something to eat in the open fields.
Origin of the name Hunter's Moon
It is believed that the North American Algonquin Tribe was the one who named the October Full Moon Hunter's Moon. As per the Oxford Dictionary, the term 'Hunter's Moon' was first used in 1710.
Hunter's Moon Alternate names
There are many other names of the October Full Moon. They usually denote the seasonal trends or activities performed during this time.
- Blood Moon or Sanguine Moon (a blood red color): There are two theories behind these names. Some say that Blood Moon, Sanguine Moon, and Dying Grass Moon denote the leaves which change colors to reddish-orange during the start of fall. Others say that the names symbolize the blood scattered during the hunting season.
- Drying Rice Moon: The Native American Dakota Tribe called the October Full Moon Drying Rice Moon because it is the time to prepare rice for the winter season post-harvest.
- Falling Leaves Moon: The Anishinaabe people named it Falling Leaves Moon because it denotes the seasonal change from summer to fall.
- Travel or Migrating Moon: The October Full Moon is also called the Travel or Migrating Moon because birds and other animals usually travel to warmer places during this time.
- Freezing or Ice Moon: The Hunter's Moon is also called Freezing or Ice Moon because of the cold weather conditions during this time.
Moon Phases in October 2023
October 6: Last Quarter Moon at 13:47 UTC
October 14: New Moon at 17:55 UTC
October 22: First Quarter Moon at 03:29 UTC
October 28: Full Moon at 20:24 UTC
Future October Full Moons
2024: October 17 at 7:26 AM EDT or 12:26 PM UTC
2025: October 7 at 03:47 UTC
2026: October 25 at 23:12 EST or 04:12 UTC (October 26)
2027: October 15 at 9:47 AM EDT or 2:47 PM UTC
2028: October 3 at 12:25 EST or 17:25 UTC
You might find this article interesting: Harvest Moon: When is it, What is it and What Does It Mean