When Is the Pink Moon? What Time April 2021's Super Full Moon Will Occur and Its Meaning

A full "pink" moon will grace the skies later this month—and this one is particularly worth heading outside to watch.

Full moons occur roughly once a month when the Earth is located directly between the sun and the moon.

This month, the moon will turn full at 11:33 p.m. ET on Monday, April 26. At this point, the side of the moon that faces towards us will be fully illuminated, appearing like a perfect circle.

In North America, the full moon in April is often referred to as the "pink moon," but unfortunately this has nothing do with the color of Earth's satellite.

The name likely derives from the pink flowers of the creeping phlox or moss phlox—a plant native to eastern North America—which often blooms around this time of year, according to The Old Farmer's Almanac.

The names given to the full moons originate from a number of places and historical periods, including Native American, colonial American and European sources.

Other traditional names for the April full moon include the breaking ice moon, moon when the streams are again navigable, budding moon of plants and shrubs, moon of the red grass appearing, moon when the ducks come back, moon when the geese lay eggs and frog moon.

This month's full moon is notable because it is also set to be a "supermoon." This refers to any full moon that occurs when our satellite is within 10 percent of its perigee, or minimum distance from Earth.

On average, supermoons appear around 7 percent larger and 15 percent brighter than typical full moons. But most observers will likely find it difficult to tell the difference, because full moons are seen only once a month and cannot be compared to each other directly.

For the best view of April's pink moon, head to an open area and watch the supermoon as it rises just above the horizon. At this point, the moon will appear at its largest thanks to a phenomenon known as the "moon illusion."

Another supermoon will be visible next month. The May full moon, which falls this year on May 26, is known as the flower moon.

If you can't make it outside to watch the pink moon, the Virtual Telescope Project, based in Italy, will be providing a live feed of the event with views of our satellite rising above the city of Rome. The livestream starts at 5:15 p.m. UTC (1:15 p.m. ET) on April 26.

A supermoon above Los Angeles, California.
A plane is seen in front of a supermoon rising above Los Angeles on May 7, 2020. Amanda Edwards/Getty Images