Blood Moon (Hunter's Moon)

The first full moon following the Autumn-Equinox full moon (i.e. Harvest Moon) is known as the Blood Moon or Hunters' Moon. Nearing the Winter season, the Blood Moon got its name from the custom of slaughtering one or more animals for Winter provisions. Shot with a Nikon D700 FX, 300mm f/4 lens, on a tripod with a 1/800 shutter speed, f/10 aperture, ISO 1600, -1.7 EV, center weighted metering (should have been spot metered).


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lcarreau - Oct 26, 2008 11:31 pm - Voted 10/10

Makes me want to go

out and hunt for a legendary 650 lb. bear that
has been terrorizing the countryside!

Nice moon shot!!!


peninsula - Oct 29, 2008 9:10 pm - Hasn't voted

Re: Makes me want to go

Thanks Icarreau,

I'm not sure about the urge to hunt, but getting out for a hike on these full-moon nights is something I would enjoy. My wife goes horseback riding the night before the full moon as I understand the moon rises earlier and is nearly as bright. I suppose the Hunters' moon ought to be the day before as well?


lcarreau - Oct 30, 2008 12:37 am - Voted 10/10

Re: Makes me want to go

Yes, it should always be the day before.
That way everybody gets a HEAD START on the
vampires and gargoyles that mercilessly roam
the countryside, looking for unwary victims in the light of the moon.

Best of luck & be careful out there!



tomi - Oct 29, 2008 2:44 pm - Voted 10/10

superb image...

especially at 1600 ISO. Did you use any noise reduction in camera?


peninsula - Oct 29, 2008 9:13 pm - Hasn't voted

Re: superb image...

Thanks tomi,

Noise reduction was set at "normal". If I am shooting shutter speeds less than a half second, I'll turn on "long exposure noise reduction". My understanding is the D700 is a winner when it comes to very little noise up to ISO 1600 (unlike my D80 which suffered horrible noise at ISO 800).

Diego Sahagún

Diego Sahagún - Oct 30, 2008 12:44 pm - Hasn't voted


I use to put the metering in the spot position in such type of pics. It'd probably been better than the center weighted. Even -1.3 or -1.0 EV would be better. Did you take any pics using those settings?



peninsula - Oct 31, 2008 7:55 am - Hasn't voted

Re: Question

Hi Deigo,

Yes, I should have used my spot meter. I simply goofed up. Center-weighted metering would cause an over exposure of the moon and that is why I ended up having to dial down with exposure compensation as much as I did. I relied on my histogram to get the best exposure regardless so in the long run, I don't believe it really made any difference, it just took more work and time to get it right. When the next opportunity avails, I'll give it another go and use the spot meter. I could easily go with a lower ISO as well. I'll basically work around a shutter speed of 1/250 to 1/500 (per Carbo's suggestion) and I'll go for a midrange aperture to take advantage of the "sweet spot" in the lens. I'll use my ISO setting to hone in on those two parameters


CClaude - Nov 20, 2008 10:34 am - Voted 10/10


That is an amazing moon shot!!!!


peninsula - Nov 20, 2008 10:43 pm - Hasn't voted

Re: Jealous!

Thank you!

aemter - Nov 21, 2008 9:18 am - Voted 10/10


Great shot. I'm hoping for a Nikon D60 for Christmas so I can experiment with things like this. Nice work!


peninsula - Nov 21, 2008 11:45 am - Hasn't voted

Re: Beautiful

I think the D60 would be an excellent choice getting started with d-SLR. One word of advice... buy a lens that will go full frame or FX (verses the DX formatted lenses) and pay the extra bucks for the faster glass. Most any of Nikon's f/2.8 lenses would make for an excellent choice depending upon the focal length you want to start with. These are generally expensive lenses, but they will last a lifetime if properly maintained... or at the least, you would most likely go through several camera upgrades before needing to invest in a lens replacement. Good photography is more about the lens than it is about the camera and it is more about the photographer than it is the equipment. Nonetheless, the more you come to enjoy photography, the more you will begin coveting equipment upgrades. In the long run, you stand to save hundreds of dollars if lens upgrades can be avoided.

The one exception I can think of in the way of lenses is the AF-S DX VR Zoom-NIKKOR 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6G IF-ED. It is an all-in-one lens that will familiarize you with the different focal length options. It is the best "intro" lens made, in my opinion.

Mark Straub

Mark Straub - Feb 6, 2009 11:09 am - Voted 10/10

Great photo!

Moon shots are very hard.



peninsula - Feb 6, 2009 2:49 pm - Hasn't voted

Re: Great photo!

Thanks Mark,

The key is to use spot metering, meter off the moon, the longer the lens the better, and check the histogram for exposure compensation settings. Best to have a tripod.


Enkidu - Jan 23, 2012 3:09 am - Hasn't voted


I did not know that this was called the Hunter's Moon. I am a bow hunter and this makes perfect sense as this moon typically marks the start of the deer rut (at least where I live) and this the best time to stalk wary bucks.


peninsula - Jan 23, 2012 9:43 am - Hasn't voted

Re: Thanks

I did not either, not until I took the photo and then got curious about the name. The advent of electricity probably did away with the custom. Cheers!

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