(KXAN) — March 9th’s full moon will take on the title of ‘Worm supermoon’ – one of only four full moon supermoons expected in 2020.
What’s in a name?
Full moons were traditionally named by how they helped Native American’s keep track of the seasons. We typically have one a month, with only an occasional exception (October 2020 will have two). March’s full moon is known as the Full Worm Moon – as this is generally when the ground thaws and earthworms reappear, signifying the start of spring.
Other names include the crow moon, crust moon, sap moon, Lenten moon (Catholic season of Lent), and the sugar moon.
First supermoon of the year
Monday’s moon is also a ‘supermoon’, when the moon is within it’s closest point of Earth in its orbit (known as ‘perigee‘), appearing bigger and brighter to the human eye.
The moon will reach its peak fullness at 12:48PM CDT just below the horizon, sitting 222,081 miles from Earth (average distance from Earth: 238,855 miles / farthest distance from Earth: 252,088 miles).
Other supermoons in 2020
March 9th’s supermoon marks the second-closest distance the moon will be to Earth this year, and the first of four full moon supermoons expected in 2020. This year’s full moon supermoons:
- April 8th — 221,851 miles from Earth (*closest moon will be to Earth in 2020)
- May 7th — 224,429 miles from Earth
- October 31st — 252,380 miles from Earth
We use the distinction full moon supermoon as there are also new moon supermoons.
Central Texas viewing forecast
Unfortunately, Monday (March 9th) will not hold favorable conditions for viewing the Worm supermoon in Central Texas. Mostly cloudy skies are expected to stretch over all counties with a chance for light rain and fog. However, be sure to remind your friends and family who live elsewhere about the event as the Worm supermoon will be visible across all of North America given ideal weather conditions.
For more information on tonight’s “Worm supermoon”, visit EarthSky’s website (click HERE).