Check out these brilliant photos of the December supermoon


The supermoon lit up night skies around the world on Sunday, Dec. 3, 2017, drawing awe from many spectators.

Skywatchers and stargazers have three opportunities to see a supermoon between Sunday and January 31.

So why doesn't this happen more often?

The moon was full at 3.47pm yesterday, at this point it was 222,761 miles from Earth - closer than the average distance of 238,900 miles.

With the moon approaching perigee, night sky photographers set out to shoot the big, glowing satellite this weekend.

More news: Chicago Bears lose Battle of the Bad to Robbie Gould, 49ers
More news: Paul Pogba starts vs. CSKA Moscow; David De Gea, Ibrahimovic rested
More news: Selena Gomez Cries Through Emotional Billboard Women in Music Speech

The pull of the full moon mean tides will be both higher and lower than normal this week, leading to some Auckland ferry services being cancelled because water levels will be too low.

In January 2018 there will be two supermoons, the first on January 1 and the second on January 31. The same is true of mini-moons which are when the full moon occurs at or near lunar apogee. It looked rather XXL in last night's clear skies - so much so that you might have been tempted to say, "That's no moon..."

"We're seeing all of the Earth's sunrises and sunsets at that moment reflected from the surface of the Moon", says Sarah Noble, a Program Scientist at NASA headquarters.

There are interesting skywatching events every year, but 2017 has been particularly generous, with the eclipse drawing millions to peer skyward and plenty of cool moon action as well, but it's still not done.