Worm Moon: The Best Time To See March’s Full Moon

The March full moon, also known as the worm moon, will make an appearance late this month.

The moon is officially full on Sunday, March 28, at precisely 2:48 p.m. EDT. Since that’s in the middle of the day, watchful eyes can simply wait until nightfall to see its glow in the night sky.

The moon will still appear full to the naked eye for about 24 hours before and after.

Why Do We Call The March Full Moon The Worm Moon?

Full moon names originate in folklore, and the names typically relate to the time of year they occur.

The worm moon goes by other names like crow moon, sap moon and even wind strong moon, but they all have one thing in common — the return of spring.

In the spring, the ground begins to warm up and thaw out. This is when earthworms that spent winter deep in the soil in search of warmth begin to move into the upper layers of dirt, even emerging onto the surface at times.

All those other names relate to spring, too, because crows begin to migrate home, sap can be drawn from the maple trees, and the winds pick up as the seasons change.

Crocus flowers in snow, spring thaw
Adobe

The Worm Moon Is The First Full Moon of Spring

The worm moon and everything about it may be a sure sign of the spring season, but this year, it’s arriving after spring officially begins.

More often than not, the March full moon arrives before spring simply because it’s still technically winter for the first three weeks of March.

This year, however, the first day of spring is March 20, and the full moon arrives on March 28 — more than a week after spring officially begins.

Most of the country has already felt spring’s warmth, with some parts of the country experiencing temperatures 10 to 20 degrees warmer than average in the first week of March.

Temperature Anomaly Map March 2021
NOAA

No matter when the moon officially arrives in March any given year, we can still count on longer days, warmer temperatures, returning migrating birds, flowing sap and, yes, worms emerging from the ground.

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