Cumbria Times
Weekend Edition
Jan Harris
Assistant Editor
9:00 AM 26th March 2021

Are You Ready For The First Supermoon Of 2021?

The first supermoon of 2021 will shine this weekend on Sunday 28 March.

Super Worm Moon

In March the full moon is also a super worm moon. It gets its name because the ground is getting warmer in the Northern Hemisphere and starts to thaw and the earthworms are re-appearing at the start of spring.

According to The Old Farmer's Almanac other names for the March full moon are sap moon as it is the time for tapping the sugar maple trees or wind strong moon because of the strong winds at this time of year.

Many of these ancient moon names have been given based on the behaviour of the plants, animals, or weather during that month.

It is said that they were the names given by Native American tribes and included into our modern calendar.

However the full moon names we now use also have Anglo-Saxon and Germanic roots.

A lunar calendar treat

In 2021 we are in for a lunar calendar treat. There will be 12 full moons including four supermoons, two lunar eclipses and a rare blue moon.

Supermoons in 2021
28 March – Super Worm Moon
27 April – Super Pink Moon
26 May – Super Flower Moon
24 June – Super Strawberry Moon

What is a supermoon?

A supermoon is when you look up at the night sky and the full moon looks so close you feel as if you could almost touch it, although sometimes the difference is hard to spot with the naked eye.

This is called a moon illusion as the full moon appears much larger when it rises behind a distant object on the horizon.

When the moon is closest to the earth a supermoon occurs. A supermoon will appear 14% larger and 30% brighter than usual. A supermoon looks especially large when rising and setting.

The moon will be 30,000 miles closer than usual. It sounds a lot, but the average distance between the earth and moon is 238,900 miles, so it’s not that huge a difference.

If you go outside on the night of a full supermoon you should actually notice that it is exceptionally bright.

According to the US space agency the term supermoon was first coined back in 1979 and is now quite commonly used.

Full Moons in 2021

Supermoon - credit Rob Harris
Supermoon - credit Rob Harris
Wolf Moon - January 28
Snow Moon - February 27
Worm Moon - March 28
Pink Moon - April 27
Flower Moon - May 26
Strawberry Moon - June 24
Buck Moon - July 31
Sturgeon Moon - August 30
Harvest Moon - September 29
Hunter's Moon - October 28
Beaver Moon - November 27
Cold Moon - December 27

Different types of moons
Blue Moon – when a full moon occurs twice in the same month
Harvest Moon – this is around the autumnal equinox when farmers do most of their harvesting
Supermoon – Supermoons are said to appear 14% bigger and 30% brighter than usual.
Blood Moon – occurs during a total lunar eclipse

Hopefully the sky will remain cloud-free and the moon will be visible for a few days either side of Sunday 28 March.

The next full moon will rise on Tuesday 27 April and is the Super Pink Moon.