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Moon in Taurus on February 22

Tonight – February 22, 2018 – let the moon show you where the constellation Taurus the Bull resides on the great dome of sky. The moon travels in front of this constellation for several days each month.

The wide waxing crescent (almost first quarter) moon might make it somewhat difficult to see the starlit figure of Taurus the Bull tonight. However, you might be able to see the Bull’s two most prominent features: the bright star Aldebaran and the Pleiades star cluster. If not, try placing your finger over the moon for a better view.

The half-lit first quarter moon happens on February 23, 2018, at 8:09 Universal Time. Converting Universal Time to the local times at North American and US time zones, that places the first quarter moon at 4:09 a.m. AST, 3:09 a.m. EST, 2:09 a.m. CST, 1:09 a.m. MST, 12:09 a.m. PST – and on February 22, at 11:09 p.m. AKST and 10:09 p.m. HST. From the most of North America, the moon will set before it reaches its first quarter phase. Click here, checking the moon phases and the moonrise and moonset boxes, to find out when the moon sets in your sky.

Once the moon drops out of the evening sky toward the end of the first week of March, you can see the Bull in all his starlit majesty. Many people are familiar with the constellation Orion and the compact line of three stars known as Orion’s Belt. Orion’s Belt always points in the direction of Taurus the Bull.

Because Orion is such a prominent constellation, you might also see the constellation Orion and Orion’s Belt on the night of February 22, despite the moon’s glare.

Bottom line: On February 22 and 23, 2018, let the moon show you the way to Taurus the Bull over the next few nights.

Bruce McClure