The first full moon of 2017 – dubbed the wolf moon – rises tonight, a signal that North America is deep into winter and the wolves are hungry.
This morning at 6:34 marks the beginning of the full moon for those of us in the eastern time zone, but there will be no significant difference in size when it rises at 6:18 p.m. in the east-northeast.
According to The Old Farmer’s Almanac, January’s moon was called the wolf moon by Native America tribes because “wolves howled in hunger outside the villages.”
But it is also called the old moon or snow moon.
“The Full Moon Names we use in the Almanac come from the Algonquin tribes who lived in regions from New England to Lake Superior,” The Almanac notes. “They are the names the Colonial Americans adopted most.”
The following is a list of 2017 full moons and their nicknames:
Feb. 10, snow moon
March 12, worm moon
April 11, pink moon
May 10, flower moon
June 9, strawberry moon
Aug. 7, sturgeon moon
Sept. 6, harvest moon
Oct. 5, hunter’s moon
Dec. 3, cold moon
The moonrise on Thursday may be blocked by clouds and showers in Palm Beach County.
The National Weather Service is putting the rain chances at 20 percent in the evening, although the daytime is expected to be mostly sunny.
As long as you’re looking up, EarthSky.org recommends finding the winter circle of stars.
The waxing gibbous moon will shine Tuesday night in the center of the circle, which includes Sirius, or the dog star – the brightest star in the sky.