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Farmers Almanac
The 2016 Farmers Almanac
Farmers' Almanac

Look Up! It’s the Lyrids!

Look Up! It’s the Lyrids!

This month, the annual Lyrid meteor shower will reach maximum activity. The best time to view these falling stars will be between 2 a.m. and 5 a.m. on the morning of April 21-22.

The source of the meteor shower is the Comet Thatcher. Every year in April, Earth passes through through Thatcher’s dusty tail of comet debris, some particles of which are no larger than a grain of sand. When they hit the Earth’s atmosphere traveling at 110,000 mph, they disintegrate as “fireball” streaks of light that linger for minutes.

The Lyrid meteor shower has the distinction of being among the oldest of known meteor showers with records dating back over 2,500 years.

What To Look For?
Lyrid meteors tend to be bright and often leave trails. About 10-20 meteors are usually visible per hour, at peak. Occasionally, surges can bring as much as 100 meteors per hour, but this is rare and not easy to predict. The Lyrids are most prolific right before dawn. Though Tuesday night into Wednesday marks the traditional peak for this shower, you should be able to enjoy a sprinkling of meteors in the days before and after peak activity.

Best Way to View Meteor Showers:
The best way to watch for meteors is to find a spot with a clear view of the sky and not affected by light pollution. Warm clothing and a blanket are advisable, as nighttime temperatures can be chilly. Enjoy!


1 roy o { 04.24.14 at 10:42 am }

Which direction should we be looking ?

2 Jaime McLeod { 04.22.14 at 10:40 am }

Northern, Tina.

3 Tina Ward { 04.21.14 at 5:11 pm }

Where, northern or Southern Hemisphere?

4 John Robertson { 04.21.14 at 8:46 am }

Between 2 and 5 am in Australia? Poland? Ghana?

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