November's Full "Beaver Moon" Will Be Blood-Red. Here's Why
November’s Full Beaver Moon is also going to be blood red thanks to a total lunar eclipse happening at the same time.
This November 2022, there are two beautiful events happening in our skies that you’ll want to mark in your calendar — and they’re both occurring at the same time. Not only will we get a really wonderful Full Moon this November, but there’s also a Total Lunar Eclipse on the docket. Oh, and if that wasn’t cool enough, November’s Full Moon will also be blood red. Here’s everything you need to know.
What is a Beaver Moon?
Each Full Moon has its own unique name. The Farmer’s Almanac explains that this time of year marks when beavers start to take shelter in the lodges they’ve made. The beavers do this to prep for the long winter, and that’s essentially what November is to people who live in four-season weather.
The Beaver Moon in November also goes by other names, including Frost Moon, Trading Moon, or Oak Moon, TimeandDate explains.
Why will the Beaver Moon be red?
This month, not only will the Full Moon be big and bright, but it will also be red, earning the moniker of a Blood moon. This happens when there’s a lunar eclipse, when the Moon moves into the Earth’s shadow, Space.com explains.
“During a total lunar eclipse, the lunar surface turns a rusty red color, earning the nickname ‘blood moon,’” Space.com continues. “The eerie red appearance is caused by sunlight interacting with Earth’s atmosphere.”
“How gold, orange, or red the moon appears during a total lunar eclipse depends on how much dust, water, and other particles are in Earth’s atmosphere,” NASA scientists note. Other atmospheric factors, such as temperature and humidity, also affect the moon’s appearance during a lunar eclipse.
When and how can my family watch the Blood-Red Beaver Moon?
The Farmer’s Almanac says the blood-red Beaver Moon lunar eclipse will reach its total peak at 6 a.m. EST on Tuesday, November 8.
However, the full moon alone — no eclipse involved — can be seen hours before that.
“Plan to look for [the full Beaver Moon] starting Monday, November 7, just after sunset,” Farmer’s Almanac suggests.
How do I safely watch the total lunar eclipse with my kids?
After deciding when the family is free to watch the Total Lunar Moon — as in, if you want to wake everyone up at or before 6 a.m. EST and cart them outside — the good news is that there is no equipment needed to safely get a good look at it.
Unlike a solar eclipse (which you should more or less never look at dead-on), it’s safe to look at the full lunar eclipse with bare eyes and take in all its beauty.
“You don’t need any special equipment to observe a lunar eclipse, although binoculars or a telescope will enhance the view and the red color,” NASA shares. “A dark environment away from bright lights makes for the best viewing conditions.”
Part of the beauty of the lunar eclipse is watching it reach totality, so if you want to step outside before 6 a.m., you can see the moon change before your eyes.
Next for the Moon is December’s Cold Moon, a fitting name for a wintry month. Stay tuned!