This month’s Full Moon is at 05.35hrs. on Thursday, 6th April and is known as the ‘Pink Moon‘. This is also the Paschal Moon, from which the date of Easter is calculated. Generally, the Christian holiday of Easter, also called Pascha, is celebrated on the first Sunday after the first full Moon of spring.
The name ‘Pink Moon’ is not because the Moon will be pink in colour. It comes from the pink moss, or wild ground phlox, which is one of the earliest widespread flowers of the Spring in North America. Other names for this month’s Full Moon, all of which indicate the season, include:
- Full Sprouting Grass Moon
- Egg Moon
- Full Fish Moon, among coastal tribes because this was the time that the fish swam upstream to spawn.
At the same time, April is a time when rivers and streams begin to fully thaw. Accordingly, April’s Full Moon was:
- Full Melting Moon, by the Shoshone tribe.
- Moon Where Ice Breaks in the River, by the Arapaho tribe.
- Sugar Maker Moon, by the Abenaki tribes
- Sugarbush Moon, by the Ojibwe tribe. The Ojibwe tribe would journey north to their spring camps to tap maple syrup and engage in spear fishing. Maple syrup was integral to Ojibwe culture: not only was it a crucial method of seasoning all their foods (they did not have access to salt at that time), but it also symbolized harmony within the community and with the forces of nature around them.
In Islamic communities around the world, April’s Full Moon is celebrated as Bara’at Night, also known as the Night of Innocence. Muslims offer up prayers, asking their God to absolve dead ancestors of their sins. They also prepare sweet desserts such as halva or zarda and give it out to children, the needy, and other members of their community.
Towards the end of the month we can look forward to the Lyrids – one of the oldest Meteor showers to be observed by Man. The Lyrids can produce up to 18 meteors per hour at the peak, with occasional fireballs, producing up to 100 shooting stars an hour. Hopefully, we have a clear sky to observe them… look Northeast 🙂