February’s full Moon is known as a Snow Moon because of the season in which it falls. In the UK, there is an average of 5.6 days in which snow falls, according to the Met Office, compared to 3.9 days for December – the month most commonly associated with snow.
The numbers are similar for all colder countries in the northern hemisphere, hence the name Snow Moon.
For centuries Native American tribes named the months after features they associated with the seasons.
And many of these ancient month names are now incorporated into the modern calendar.
The Snow Moon is the Full Moon in February, and is named after the snow scattered on the freezing ground.
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The moon will peak on February 8 and 9
Some Native American tribes named it the Hunger Moon due to the scarce food resources and difficult mid-winter hunting conditions.
NASA said: “The Maine Farmer’s Almanac first published ‘Indian’ names for the full Moons in the 1930’s, and according to this almanac, the tribes of what is now the northeastern United States called this the Snow Moon or the Storm Moon because of the heavy snows that fall in this season.”
This full moon will peak on the eves of February 8 and 9.
NASA said on its website: “The Moon will appear full for about three days centred around this time, from Friday evening to Monday morning, making this a full Moon weekend.”
READ MORE: Snow Moon 2020: When is the February Supermoon? What is its meaning?
Some Native American tribes named it the Hunger Moon due to the scarce food resources
However, as is typical of UK weather in February, the skies may obstruct the view of the Moon.
Cloud is expected to cover the UK for most of the weekend, although skies may be partially clear at times on Friday.
The Moon will also be a supermoon, making it the first of the year and the decade.
On average, the Moon is 238,000 miles from Earth, but during a supermoon the can be 221,000 miles away from our planet.
This is because the Moon’s orbit is not a perfect circle and is actually slightly oval.
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What are the full moons of 2020?
Here are all of the 13 named Full Moons you should look out for this year:
January 10 – Full Woolf Moon
February 9 – Full Snow Moon
March 9 – Full Worm Moon
April 8 – Full Pink Moon
May 7 – Full Flower Moon
June 5 – Full Strawberry Moon
July 5 – Full Buck Moon
August 3 – Full Sturgeon Moon
September 2 – Full Corn Moon
October 1 – Full Hunter’s Moon
October 31 – Blue Moon
November 30 – Full Beaver’s Moon
December 30 – Full Cold Moon