A Blue Moon is the popular term for a second full Moon in a calendar month. Technically, in WA, we had our Blue Moon last month. In fact it was a Blue “Minimoon”!
Everyone else in Australia celebrates a Blue Moon this month. Why the difference?
The full Moon is determined at the exact time that the Moon appears completely illuminated from our perspective on Earth. For this full Moon, this happened at precisely 11pm on 31st October (WA time). This means that in other time zones in Australia, the full Moon happened on 1st November.
They all have a full Moon in November whereas we had ours in October!
When to look:
Our next full Moon is on 30th November. Moonrise is at 7:05pm.
Which direction to look: The Moon rises in the east.
In recent times, a Blue Moon refers to the second full Moon that occurs in a calendar month. However, did you know that it also refers to an extra full Moon that appears in a season? The third of the four full Moons in a season is the Blue Moon.
The chance for an extra full Moon in a month or in a season happens because the Moon takes 29.53 days to orbit Earth. 29.53 days is shorter than all calendar months (except February) and gives the opportunity for us to have the extra full Moon.
What craters can you see on the Moon?
When you observe the Moon, take it one step further and identify a crater or two! There are some great tools that help you out with maps of all the features on the surface of the Moon. Before you know it, you’ll be pointing out the Tycho Crater or the Sea of Tranquillity to friends and family! Try some of these free apps and software:
Moon Globe (for iOS)
Moon Atlas 3D (for Android)
LunarMap Lite (for Android)