In August, the full Moon is called the full Sturgeon Moon! This Moon follows July’s full Buck Moon.
Why Is It Called 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.
Other names for this full Moon include the Corn Moon (signaling that the corn is nearly ready for harvest) and the Flying Up Moon, which marks the time when young birds are first starting to learn to fly!
What Is a Sturgeon?
Sturgeon are prehistoric-looking fish that evolved around 136 million years ago. Many people call them “living fossils”—and rightfully so! Today, there are about 29 species worldwide, including the lake sturgeon found in the Great Lakes region of North America. There have been reports of gigantic sturgeon as long as a Volkswagen car!
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, using its whiskers to sense prey.
When to See the Sturgeon Moon
August’s full Moon will appear on the night of Saturday, August 21, before reaching peak illumination at 8:02 A.M. Eastern Time on Sunday, August 22. On Saturday or Sunday night, look toward the southeast after sunset to catch a glimpse of the Sturgeon Moon rising!