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CINDY DAY: Looking up while we look back a half-century

Last month’s full strawberry moon put on quite a show as it came up over Port Medway, N.S.,  and Barry Burgess was there to capture the moment.  If you are out tonight and get a shot of the full buck moon, be sure to share it:  weathermail@weatherbyday.ca
Last month’s full strawberry moon put on quite a show as it came up over Port Medway, N.S., and Barry Burgess was there to capture the moment. If you are out tonight and get a shot of the full buck moon, be sure to share it: weathermail@weatherbyday.ca - Contributed

We’ll be hearing a lot of “moon talk” in the next few days: 50 years ago this month, on July 20, 1969, Neil Armstrong became the first person to step foot on the moon. That one small step rocketed our interest and fascination with our planet’s only natural satellite.

We are treated to at least one full moon a month, but I never tire of looking up at Earth’s only natural satellite.

Did you happen to see the moon last night? It was gorgeous – almost full. It will be officially full tonight! The official time of the full moon is not well understood. Many people believe the moonrise time is the time of the official full moon but that’s not quite right. The full moon rises as the sun sets, but the full moon time is earlier than that. The moon’s phase is considered full at the precise moment it is opposite the sun. That happens today at 6:38 p.m. ADT (7:08 p.m. NDT).

If you don’t get a chance to see it, there’s always tomorrow; the full moon appears full for about three days around the full moon date.

Today’s full moon is the first full moon of the summer and it goes by a few interesting names. The most common is the “full buck moon.” The full moons have descriptive names that typically come from Indigenous tribes who used the full moons to keep track of the seasons. At this time, a buck’s antlers are in full growth mode and that’s where the name comes from.

As was evident Sunday night across parts of our region, thunderstorms are quite frequent at this time of the year; therefore, the July full moon is also known as the full thunder moon.

Did you know ? 

As you read this, the moon is moving away from us. Each year, the moon steals some of Earth’s rotational energy and uses it to propel itself about four centimetres higher in its orbit. Researchers say that when it formed, about 4.6 billion years ago, the moon was about 22,530 kilometres from Earth. It’s now more than 450,000 kilometres away.

If you are out tonight and get a shot of the full buck moon, be sure to share it:  weathermail@weatherbyday.ca



Cindy Day is the chief meteorologist for SaltWire Network.


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