To find the constellations of the Zodiac in the night sky, you must more or less follow the path the sun takes during the day.
That’s what this chart is doing. It shows which zodiacal constellations are up as soon as darkness falls. You’re more or less facing south for this chart, looking southeast to southwest. Outside of this chart, the constellation Leo the Lion, is sinking into the western sky. Although you may have difficulty seeing the Lion’s stars in the glow of evening twilight, the blazing planet Venus will be shining in front of this constellation as dusk gives way to nightfall.
One of you wrote, “What does Zodiac mean?”
The word Zodiac just means “pathway of animals.” It’s an important pathway across our sky because – as mentioned above – the sun travels this path during the day, and the moon and planets travel it at night.
In other words, speaking astronomically now (not astrologically), we live in a solar system that consists of planets orbiting a sun. The planets orbit our sun in a nearly flat plane. If you project that plane against our sky, you get a narrow pathway upon which the sun, moon and planets all travel. You all know this pathway. It’s the path of the sun during day, as it travels from east to west.
The astronomical word for the plane of Earth’s orbit around the sun, which more or less defines the plane of the solar system, is ecliptic. And we often speak of the ecliptic in the night sky. The zodiacal constellations are those upon which the ecliptic, or plane of the solar system, is projected in our sky.