The Full Hunter's Moon
When is the Full Hunter’s Moon—and what’s the meaning behind its name? Plus, find your Moon phase dates, Best Days by the Moon, folklore, and more!
When to See October’s Full Moon
While the Full Hunter’s Moon will reach peak fullness on Sunday, October 13, 2019, the Moon will appear full for roughly three days, from Saturday morning to Tuesday morning.
It’s the only night in the month when the Moon is in the sky all night long—visible in the sky at sunset and setting around sunrise the next day!
Because the Hunter’s Moon rises from the horizon around sunset, it may appear bigger and more orange—how perfect for the fall season! But don’t be fooled by the “Moon Illusion,” which makes the Moon appear larger than it really is!
Want to know the exact time of moonrise in your location? Check out our Moonrise and Moonset Calculator.
Moon Phases for October 2019
See all Moon phase dates and times (EDT) below.
|First Quarter: October 5, 12:47 P.M.|
|Full Moon: October 13, 5:08 P.M.|
|Last Quarter: October 21, 8:39 A.M.|
|New Moon: October 27, 11:38 P.M.|
For your next full Moon, see our Full Moon Dates chart.
What is it Called the Hunter’s Moon?
Most of our monthly full Moon names come from Native American and early American folklore, and were originally used to mark the progression of the seasons. Interestingly, the Full Hunter’s Moon is one of only two full Moon names that is not tied to a specific month.
Instead, the Hunter’s Moon relates directly to the Harvest Moon. The first full Moon to occur after the Harvest Moon (which is the closest full moon to the autumnal equinox) takes on the mantle of “Hunter’s Moon,” which means that the Full Hunter’s Moon may occur in either October or November, depending on when the Harvest Moon is!
Deer Stag carrying the Moon in his antlers. Credit: Gallinago/Shutterstock.
Some folks believe that this full Moon was called the Full Hunter’s Moon because it signaled the time to go hunting in preparation for winter. Since the harvesters had recently reaped the fields under the Harvest Moon, hunters could easily see the fattened deer and other animals that had come out to glean (and the foxes and wolves that had come out to prey on them).
The earliest use of the term “Hunter’s Moon” cited in the Oxford English Dictionary is from 1710. Some sources suggest that other names for the Hunter’s Moon are the Sanguine or Blood Moon, either associated with the blood from with hunting or the turning of the leaves in autumn. Some Native American tribes, who tied the full Moon names to the season’s activities, called the full Moon the “Travel Moon” and the “Dying Grass Moon.”
Image: Moonrise over the Syr Darya river, Sunday, Nov. 13, 2016, Baikonur, Kazakhstan. Credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls
In lunisolar calendars, the months change with the new Moon and full Moons fall in the middle of the lunar month. This full Moon falls near the middle of the ninth month in the Chinese calendar and Marcheshvan in the Hebrew calendar. In the Islamic calendar, the months start with the first sighting of the waxing crescent Moon a few days after the New Moon. This full Moon is near the middle of Safar, the second month of the Islamic year.
October Full Moon Video
Each month, we will explain the traditional names of the full Moon along with some fascinating Moon facts. Click below to watch the video.
Best Days in October 2019
Below are some of the best days for certain activities, based on the Moon’s sign and phase in October.
Aboveground crops: 4, 5, 6
Belowground crops: 14, 15, 16
- Corn planted under a waning Moon grows slower but yields larger ears.
- Babies born a day after the full Moon enjoy success and endurance.
- A new Moon in your dreams promises increased wealth or a happy marriage.