Full Moon in August 2021

Catch the Full Sturgeon Moon!

August 18, 2021
Full Sturgeon Moon - OFA

August’s full Sturgeon Moon reaches its peak on Sunday morning, August 22, 2021. So, be sure to look up both Saturday and Sunday nights! Learn why August’s Full Moon got such a peculiar name!

When to See the Full Moon in August 2021

August’s full Moon will first appear on the night of Saturday, August 21, before reaching peak illumination at 8:02 A.M. Eastern Time on Sunday, August 22. On either of these nights, look toward the southeast after sunset to catch a glimpse of the Sturgeon Moon rising.

August’s Blue Moon

This full Moon is also a Blue Moon! Specifically, it’s a seasonal Blue Moon, meaning that it’s the third of the four full Moons to occur within the season of summer. Typically, only three full Moons happen in a season, but when the dates of the full Moons and those of the equinoxes and solstices line up just right, a fourth full Moon can manage to fit into the season as well. The third full Moon in the series is then considered to be a Blue Moon. 

You may have also heard of another definition of a Blue Moon: the second full Moon to occur within one calendar month. This definition tends to be more common. Read more about Blue Moons here!

Why Is It Called the Sturgeon Moon?

The full Moon names used by The Old Farmer’s Almanac come from a number of places, including Native American, Colonial American, and European sources. Traditionally, each full Moon name was applied to the entire lunar month in which it occurred, not solely to the full Moon.

The Sturgeon Moon

August’s full Moon was traditionally called the Sturgeon Moon because the giant sturgeon of the Great Lakes and Lake Champlain were most readily caught during this part of summer.

What Is a Sturgeon?

These prehistoric-looking fish have been traced back to around 136 million years ago and many people call them “living fossils.”

  • Females require around 20 years to start reproducing, and they can only reproduce every 4 years. However, they can live up to 150 years!
  • Today, there are about 29 species worldwide, including the lake sturgeon found in the Great Lakes. They have evolved in size from the size of a bass to monster sturgeon as big as a Volkswagen.
  • The lake sturgeon is quite rare today, due to intense overfishing in the 19th century, pollution, and damage to their habitat.

The word "sturgeon" means "the stirrer," which is what this giant fish does when it is looking for food; it stirs up the mud and silt on river and lake bottoms. Notice the pointed snout and whisker-like tactile organs near the mouth. Credit: Tennessee Aquarium..jpg
The word “sturgeon” means “the stirrer,” which is what this giant fish does when it is looking for food; it stirs up the mud and silt on river and lake bottoms. Notice the pointed snout and whisker-like tactile organs near the mouth. Credit: Tennessee Aquarium.

Alternative August Moon Names

Flying Up Moon is a Cree term describing the time when young birds are finally ready to take the leap and learn to fly. 

Corn Moon (Algonquin, Ojibwe), Harvest Moon (Dakota), and Ricing Moon (Anishinaabe) signify that this is the time to gather maturing crops. Along the same vein, the Assiniboine people named this period Black Cherries Moon, referring to when chokecherries become ripe.

The Tlingit people of the Pacific Northwest traditionally called this time of the season the Mountain Shadows Moon.

See all Full Moon names and their meanings.

Moon Phases for August 2021

See Moon phase dates and times below. Note: All dates and times are ET. Go to the Moon Phase Calendar for your time zone.

Moon Phases for August 2021

New Moon: August 8, 9:50 A.M.
First Quarter: August 15, 11:21 A.M.
Full Moon: August 22, 8:02 A.M.
Last Quarter: August 30, 3:15 A.M.

For your next full Moon, see our Full Moon Dates chart.

Full Sturgeon Moon Video

Each month, we will explain the traditional names of the Full Moon along with some fascinating facts. In this video, learn about the Full Sturgeon Moon. Click below to watch the video.

Best Days in August 2021

Below are the best days for activities, according to the Moon’s sign and phase in August.

Activity Best Days
Cutting Hay 25, 26
Setting Eggs 1, 20, 21, 29, 30
Fishing 8-22

See Best Days for MORE activities.

Moon Folklore

  • Clothes washed for the first time in the full Moon will not last long.
  • If you glimpse the new Moon over your right shoulder, you will have good luck.
  • To have a project prosper, start it during the new Moon.
  • Babies born a day after the full Moon enjoy success and endurance.

Share your thoughts about this month’s moon below!


Reader Comments

Leave a Comment

Blue moon

Even though the full moon is slightly visible tonight (08-21-21) & then illuminates fully tomorrow morning , it is still ONE full moon. Therefore, I don’t agree with the idea that this current full moon is also a blue moon. The name Blue moon is given to the second full moon in a calendar month. This moon is unique, absolutely, but it doesn’t fit the title of a blue moon.

Blue Moons

The Editors's picture

You are correct that August’s full Moon does not fit that definition of a Blue Moon. However, there are actually two different types of Blue Moons! August’s is what we call a “seasonal” Blue Moon, which is defined as the third of four full Moons to occur within one season. Read more about it here!

Berries/Full Moon~

Farmer's Almanac wrote; the Assiniboine (Indian) people named this period Black Cherries Moon, referring to when chokecherries become ripe; comment: Red Choke-cherries are not fully edible; whereas; Black-choke berries are; Black choke-berries; aka Aronia; prolific in NE; good for Bird-food~(the berries can be dried)~

New Moon

Please tell me how to glimpse the new moon over your right shoulder when I've always been told the new moon is not visible in the sky.

new moon lore

The Editors's picture

You are correct in that one can not actually see a new Moon, at least with the unaided eye, unless there is a solar eclipse (which requires proper eye protection). If one were somehow to see a new Moon on a non-eclipse day, then that would really be a stroke of luck! However, an alternate meaning of “new Moon” refers to the time when the thinnest of crescents first becomes visible. Similarly, we are guessing that “new Moon” in this bit of folklore actually means “around the time of the new Moon,” such as a day or two after, when the crescent is just beginning to show.

august full moon & brightest star

I was outside this morning August 27th, 2018 at 3 a.m. The Moon was breathtaking and colored orange. The brightest star in the sky was also the same bright orange... Was this just a reflection from the moon? Or was/is there something specific in the atmosphere to make them both appear so bright orange??/

orange star

Catherine Boeckmann's picture

Hi Toni,  How magical! The bright orange star you are seeing is Mars which has been a delightful presence this year! Reddish-orange skies at night usually mean a lot of atmospheric dust or clouds or haziness in the atmosphere. As the shorter light wavelengths are scattered, only red light is left, as it has the largest wavelength of the seven colors.

If the Moon looks orange, unfortunately, this could also be due to the major forest fires that are happening in our Western regions. It’s indeed very pretty but may reflect atmospheric debris from a natural disaster.

August full moon

I was just talking with my grandchildren as we were looking at the moon during the day as to when the next full moon was. We looked at our local weather stations web site and found nothing. I said I bet the farmers almanac will know and there it was! Now we are on a new subject about you lol

Full Moon

The Editors's picture

Glad to hear that we could help answer your question! Thanks for reading!

Full moon information

This is lovely! Thank you. I work in a middle/high school library and I'm sure that this information will come in handy!


1. The FA has to be more mainstream and more people need to know about it. I am really enjoying all you have on these pages, which I found by accident!

2. The moon tonight (August 8, 2017) is just magnificent in Rockville, MD.

3. My Cairn Terrier and my Yorkies are out on the deck, looking up at the moon! Wonder what they know...

4. Thanks so much for all your planting/gardening/recipe/etc. ideas. Reminds me of being home, on the farm, in New Jersey, when I was a little girl. : )

Thanks again,



First time

Sturgeon full moon

Thank you for your never ending help with your almanac! I have enjoyed it's many uses for years!

Thank YOU!

The Editors's picture

Why, thank you, Alejandro! We appreciate your interest in The Old Farmer’s Almanac. Your kind words made our day. With all good wishes, your editors in Dublin, New Hampshire.

Its in bloom the moon

High in the sky at night a moon its in its full bloom , past the summer equinox to pick some things you have planted in your gardens the next day enjoy your fruits
an labours .

So glad to reconnect with the

So glad to reconnect with the Farmer's Almanaci

sturgeon moon

the moon info was so interesting and I learned a lot!

Full Moon Fever!

Thank u for keeping us all informed of the latest full moon. I trust the Farmer's Almanac, as I have seen the printed copies and even bought them, before. I can most definitely feel the energy surrounding the waxing of the full moon, but like the gentleman states in the comments below, the cycles of the moon are most affecting. I had an old Drama professor in college who would always schedule our plays/productions around the full moon's cycle. The weekend before the full moon was to was the fullest, he felt, had the best energy. To this day, I have kept that in mind. Thanks for enlightening us all on the various types of moons; ie: Strawberry, Blue, Sturgeon, etc. Enjoy, everyone!

Full Moon Fever!

Correction to previous: "was to wax, was the fullest, & had the best energy."

Thank you!

Thank you!
I love this Almanac! Keep up this work!
I must say, I am firing up, as the moon waxes and becomes full only to be more tired as it wanes! Is it me? Or do I react to my wife's women's cycle? It's great being here though, in the waxing! Great dreams! Full energy! But, what goes up, must come down!

"Blue moon of kentucky, keep

"Blue moon of kentucky, keep on shining
Shine on the one that's gone and left me blue..." -Bill Monroe

It is indeed a most beautiful

It is indeed a most beautiful moon tonight! So clear one can almost count its craters, mountains and vales! Some look at a wonder such as this and say it is a marvel of modern science to know such a thing, others say it is a wonder of nature that such a scene could happen. I looked at this beautiful moon tonight and thought, it is a wonder of the Logos, the work of the creating and sustaining hand of Jesus Christ! How marvelous is His mercy and grace, when with all that is wrong with mankind, the good Lord in His goodness continues to give us glimpses of the beauty of His glory and majesty!

Amen!! Thank you for the

Amen!! Thank you for the beautiful comment! All glory to God! "the moon shines full at His command, and all the stars obey"!! - Isaac Watts, 1715

i can always see the full

i can always see the full moon out my front door here in georgia and this one is so clear, wonderful!

In 2013, the August moon will

In 2013, the August moon will REALLY be a Blue Moon. That is, it will be the third full moon in the summer season which has four full moons in 2013. This is the original, correct definition of a Blue Moon. The definition about the second full moon in a month is a more recent simplified usage.

Most tropical years have 12

The Editors's picture

Most tropical years have 12 full Moons, three for each season. But occasionally it contains one extra Moon. This is the case next year with the four full Moons in summer. Thanks for pointing this out!

"In 2013, the August moon

"In 2013, the August moon will REALLY be a Blue Moon. That is, it will be the third full moon in the summer season which has four full moons in 2013. This is the original, correct definition of a Blue Moon. The definition about the second full moon in a month is a more recent simplified usage."

If each season normally has three full moons, why then, wouldn't the term 'blue moon' refer to the FOURTH full moon of the season, since it's the rarer one?

Neal Armstrong gives the

Neal Armstrong gives the Earth a wink, and good-bye, as his funeral is today, the day of the Full Blue Moon.

Wow, that is amazing! He

Wow, that is amazing! He could not have planned it better had he planned it himself. Of course, we know we cannot choose the date of our birth nor our death and we certainly cannot be assured of the date of our funeral. Things like this should make even the most stern of agnostics and atheist wonder if "somebody bigger than you and I" is not in control after all! Mr. Armstrong was a great American, a true frontiersman of the new frontier. May he rest in peace.