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Dr. Sky

A breakdown of each full moon and their nicknames

A passenger jet passes in front of the waning full moon as it approaches Sky Harbor International Airport Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2016, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

The beauty of another full moon is just around the corner!

The next full moon that we will experience will occur on Wednesday at 2:42 p.m. Arizona time.

This full moon is known by many as the Full Flower Moon, a reflection on the many flowers which are in full bloom around the nation.

There is a very interesting story behind the names of the full moons in our calendar.

Many of the Native American cultures in the northern and eastern United States kept track of the growing seasons by giving specific names to the full moon of each month.

The lunar synodic month is about 29.5 days in length, on average, so the actual dates of a full moon wander during each calendar month.

Here is a listing of the dates of the full moon in 2017, along with the names of those moons and why they are called that.

January

The Full Wolf Moon rose Jan. 12.

It earned that name because, in the cold of winter, wolf packs seeking food would howl outside Native American villages.

February

The Full Snow Moon rose on Feb. 10.

The heaviest of snows fell in February and hunting was difficult. Many Native American tribes called this the Full Hunger Moon.

March

The Full Worm Moon rose in the night sky on March 12.

The moon was named after the insect because the ground had thawed enough for worms to appear in the soil, inviting a return to the growing season for many tribes.

April

The Full Pink Moon made its 2017 appearance on April 11.

Many flowers would bloom in April, along with the grass pink orchid.

May

The Full Flower Moon will rise on Wednesday, May 10.

It’s called the Flower Moon because flowers dot the landscape in most regions of the United States.

June

The Full Strawberry Moon is expected to rise on June 9.

Strawberry season is strong in June and this full moon will be appear as the smallest of 2017 — it’s some 12 percent smaller than the largest moon, which will occur on Dec. 3.

July

The Full Thunder Moon will appear in the night sky on July 9.

Thunderstorms are frequent in many places in the United States. This moon was also known by many tribes as the Full Buck Moon because it is a time when antlers push out of buck deer.

August

Look for the Full Sturgeon Moon on Aug. 7.

Many tribes caught this large lake fish in abundance during August.

September

The Full Corn Moon will rise on Sept. 6.

Corn was in full bloom for many Native American tribes.

October

The Full Harvest Moon — which will rise Oct. 5 — is the moon that is closest to the autumnal equinox.

The harvest moon rises closer to sunset and provided extra illumination to harvest crops.

November

The Full Beaver Moon, which will appear on Nov. 5, is named so because it was when many tribes set beaver traps to ensure a good supply of furs for the winter months.

December

The Full Cold Moon — the final full moon of the year — will rise on Dec. 3.

Just in time for winter this full moon was also known as the Full Long Night’s Moon for the coming winter solstice.

This will be the closest full moon of 2017, when the moon appears only some 222,135 miles from Earth and the only supermoon of 2017!

May skies offer something for everyone! Get you very own Dr. Sky May star chart.

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