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Randy Baumhover captured this image at Meyers Creek Beach on the Oregon coast.

EarthSky’s top 10 tips for meteor-watchers

How to watch a meteor shower. Tips for beginners.

The star Skat is the 3rd-brightest in the faint constellation Aquarius.

Delta Aquarid radiant point near Skat

How to spot the radiant point for the Delta Aquarid meteor shower, going on now. Plus … why meteors in annual showers have radiant points.

Radiant point of Delta Aquarid meteor shower

Go someplace dark and watch meteors!

It’s time to watch meteors. The Delta Aquarid and Perseid meteor showers always get rolling around now. Most important … find a dark sky.

Image via Janusz Krysiak/Astronomy Sketch of the Day

Star of the week: Epsilon Lyrae

Binoculars reveal Epsilon Lyrae as a double star – two stars in one. A telescope shows that each component star is also a double. The double double star!


Moon and Aldebaran before dawn July 29

From most of North America, the moon and star Aldebaran will appear a hair’s-breadth apart. From Texas, Mexico or Central America, the moon will cover Aldebaran.


See all 5 bright planets after sunset

Three of the 5 planets are easy to see. Two aren’t so easy. Charts and info here that can help you see all 5 planets together in late July and early August, 2016.

The moon was almost exactly at last quarter when Jenney Disimon in Sabah, North Borneo captured this photo on July 27, 2016 (5:30 a.m. local time, or July 26 at 21:30 UTC).

Last quarter moon was July 26

Fun time to see a last quarter moon: just after it rises, shortly after midnight. Then the lighted portion points downward, to the sun below your feet.


Farthest lunar perigee on July 27

The moon reaches perigee – its closest point to Earth – once each month. Today’s perigee is the most distant one of 2016.

In late July and early August, watch for the three medium-bright "Belt" stars of Orion the Hunter to ascend over your eastern horizon shortly before dawn.

Orion the Hunter returns before dawn

Orion the Hunter – the most noticeable of constellations – returns to the east before dawn in each year at this time.

Photo by Jack Fusco

Perseid outburst expected in 2016

Outburst – perhaps 200 meteors an hour – predicted for 2016 Perseid meteor shower. Peak night August 11-12, but watch on the nights leading up to the peak, too.

David S. Brown caught this meteor on July 30, 2014, in southwest Wyoming.

Watch for Delta Aquarid meteors

Delta Aquarid shower officially began mid-July. Nominal peak July 28 or 29. The shower is long and rambling. If you watch the Perseids in August, you’ll see Delta Aquarids then, too.

You'll find Scutum above the constellation Sagittarius, in the south on N. Hemisphere summer evenings.

Scutum the Shield named for Polish king

The constellation Scutum has just 4 noticeable stars, and even those require a dark sky.

Waning gibbous moon on the morning of July 24, 2016, by Ruy Queiroz in São Paulo, Brazil.

Where’s the moon? Waning gibbous

Look for the waning gibbous moon late at night. It might look strangely oblong. Or look for it in the west in early morning, floating against the pale blue sky.


Summer Triangle and smallest constellations

You need a dark country sky to see these small constellations in and about the Summer Triangle: Vulpecula the Fox, Delphinus the Dolphin and Sagitta the Arrow.


Altair and Aquila the Eagle

In the east, after dark on July evenings, look for the bright star Altair fairly close to the horizon. Altair is the brightest star in the constellation Aquila.


Deneb and Cygnus the Swan

Deneb is the northernmost star in the Summer Triangle asterism. Its constellation Cygnus the Swan flies along the starlit trail of the Milky Way.


Vega and its constellation Lyra

The Summer Triangle consists of three bright stars in three different constellations. The brightest is Vega in the constellation Lyra.


Vega is the Harp Star

One of the prettiest stories in all skylore surrounds this star. “On the 7th night of the 7th moon … “


Sun enters Cancer on July 20

You may know that the sun enters the sign Cancer every year at the June solstice. The sun enters the constellation Cancer a month later, on or near July 20.


What’s special about a full moon?

You know it when you see it, but what makes a full moon full?