Moon rising, Tucson, Arizona
© Tim Murphy/Shutterstoc
A pink moon over Arizona. April’s full moon
A full moon can be awe-inspiring, luminous, and beautiful in the night sky. Humanity is so enthralled with the moon that we’ve given it dozens of names to describe its many variants: blue moon, harvest moon, hunter’s moon, and beaver moon to name a few. April’s first full moon, seen today, is the pink moon, named for the pink wildflowers that bloom in early spring. This moon over Arizona may be pink, but not due to the date. Sunlight reflects off the moon and travels through our atmosphere where dust, pollution, smoke, or other particles scatter the light and change its colour from white or blue light to red, orange, yellow, or pink. When the moon hangs lower in the sky, we view it through more of our atmosphere—so varied colours are more likely. Perhaps this pink moon is tinged by the dust of the Arizona desert.