AP NEWS

First Day Of Spring Brings ‘Full Worm Moon’

March 20, 2019

Supermoon, we hardly knew ye.

Today, the full moon will rise the same day as the start of the spring equinox. It is called the “Full Worm Moon” or “Full Worm Supermoon.”

A Supermoon means the moon will be nearly at its closest point to Earth for the month of March. Sadly, it’s already the year’s third and final Supermoon, appearing brighter and larger than normal if the night sky is clear and dark.

Back in January, there was the “Super Wolf Blood Moon Eclipse.”

February then brought the “Super Snow Moon,” which was said to be slightly bigger than usual (and reportedly the biggest until December 2026).

What’s in a

Supermoon name?

According to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, the last time the full moon and the spring equinox coincided this closely (just four hours apart) was in March 2000, but the last time they occurred on the exact same date was back on March 20, 1981.

The Almanac says Native American and other traditional moon names were used to track the seasons. This month’s “Full Worm Moon” is named as such because the ground begins to soften enough for earthworms to appear (thus inviting the birds to feed).

Another name for the March moon is the “Full Sap Moon” because it’s also the time of year when the sap of sugar maples starts to flow.

Can worms

survive in space?

The odd naming convention of this month’s moon may have some of you asking, “Can worms survive in space?”

NASA has an entire website dedicated to answering this question. Most recently, worms were flown to the International Space Station to help scientists understand more about spaceflight-induced muscle loss.

A few years ago, National Geographic also noted earthworms were able to reproduce in simulated Mars soil.