HomeTechStrawberry Moon 2020: Top tips for enjoying tonight's celestial display

Strawberry Moon 2020: Top tips for enjoying tonight’s celestial display

People riding the Ferris wheel gaze at the Strawberry Moon in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by The Asahi Shimbun via Getty Images)

The sky above the UK will be graced by a full moon known as the Strawberry moon tonight.

The nickname derives from the fact this full moon coincides with the start of strawberry picking season in North America.

Sadly, the moon won’t be taking on a pinkish stawberry-coloured hue, but it will be nice and bright – reflecting the sunlight back towards Earth.

For those who won’t be able to see it properly – perhaps due to cloud cover – the Virtual Telescope Project will be livestreaming it over the internet.

June’s full moon is always particularly low in the sky so UK skywatchers will only catch the tail end of it.

Moon rise in London, for example, won’t happen until 9.30, according to the Met Office.

Zoltan Toth-Czifra, founder of Under Lucky Stars, talked to Metro.co.uk about the upcoming Strawberry Moon.

‘This year has been full of astronomical events with the supermoons over the past few months and it doesn’t end there. Tonight the rare Strawberry Moon will rise and be visible each night over this weekend,’ he said.

Will you be heading out to spot the moon tonight? (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

‘To make sure you catch it, the moon can be seen rising tonight at around 8pm, it will then burn brightly throughout the night. Moons always rise in the east and set in the west – so follow this direction in your search.’

‘Unfortunately unlike its name, the moon won’t be pink in colour! But it will be a breath-taking full moon, so you may even see it cast moon shadows on the ground.

‘This moon is named Strawberry Moon as a reference to the time of harvesting strawberries in North America, originally from Native American tribes who used the moon as an indicator of when the fruit would be ripe.’

He continued: ‘In the current climate, a lower than average level of pollution combined with a good weather forecast means the view will be even clearer. As always, the moon will affect the Earth’s ocean, and the extra gravitational pull means we should brace ourselves for some spectacular tides worldwide.’

Top tips to enjoy tonight’s Strawberry Moon

A few handy tips for stargazing (Credits: Getty Images/iStockphoto)

The team from Under Lucky Stars have got several top tips on stargazing from home with no equipment.

These aren’t just applicable to the Strawberry Moon, but good for any kind of astronomy you want to try.

Allow time

When you decide to stargaze, allow enough time. Your eyes are surrounded by brightness all day, and when they are looking for something they need time to adjust.

Allow at least 30 minutes to see results when you are staring into space and you’ll be seriously impressed by the results.

Turn it off 

Telescope won’t be needed tonight (Picture: P Tomkins/ VisitScotland/Scottish Viewpoint)

Before you head into the garden, turn off all the lights in your house.

Artificial brightness from light sources makes it harder to view the stars in the sky, so make your surrounding area as dark as possible.

If you can’t turn it off, wait

Bear in mind that turning off the lights means all the surrounding area. The moon is the brightest thing in the sky at night, and any glare can make it harder to observe the sky.

Choosing moonless nights or ones where the moon is just a sliver is optimum for spotting the most stars.

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