Burnham-On-Sea residents who gazed up into the sky overnight will have spotted the so-called Buck Moon.
The seventh full moon of the year is traditionally known as the Buck Moon, Thunder Moon or Hay Moon.
Photographed here rising behind the UK’s shortest pier on Thursday night (July 22nd), it is due to reach its peak early on Saturday morning.
Many of the names popularly associated with the Full Moon have been attributed to the time-keeping traditions of Native Americans.
Various tribes gave the Full Moon’s different names as a means of tracking changes in the landscape and wildlife through the year.
For instance, the Strawberry Moon in June appears around the time wild strawberries are ripening.
The Buck Moon is believed to be named after young bucks – male deer – sprouting new antlers this time of the year.
Antlers are regularly dropped and grow back over a period of months, covered in a furry skin called velvet.
According to the British Deer Society (BDS), most species of deer cover their antlers in velvet between May and August.
Amy Nieskens of the Old Farmer’s Almanac explains: “July’s Full Moon is called the Full Buck Moon because at this time bucks begin to grow new antlers.”
“It is also known as the Thunder Moon because thunderstorms are so frequent at this time of year.”
Full Moons appear once a month at the halfway point of the lunar cycle.