The distant star Arcturus and closer neighbors, Jupiter, Saturn and Mars will be on display this month, along with the Eta Aquarids meteor shower.
Wildlife & Nature
March offered opportunities to photograph distant galaxies; and our closer neighbors, Venus, Mars and Jupiter, will be on display throughout April.
NASA recently announced the discovery of seven exoplanets circling another star 40 light-years away; and March offers glimpses of planets closer to home, including Mars, Uranus and Mercury.
The planet Uranus will be visible, with binoculars, for most of this month, as it appears to transit closer and closer to Mars in the night sky.
Wintertime is peak season for viewing waterfowl at wildlife refuges and natural areas on the coast, but birders who prefer the view from indoors can also see a variety of species, if they offer the right food.
The new year begins with a good opportunity to look for the Orion Nebula, near the eastern horizon as the skies get dark and easy to see on a clear winter’s night.
The supermoon in December will make it super hard to get a look at the Geminids meteor shower, but stargazers should still be able to see about 10 to 20 meteors per hour when the shower peaks at mid-month.
October is a great time for birdwatching on the Outer Banks, with the arrival of migratory waterfowl, raptors, shorebirds and songbirds, here just in time for the Wings Over Water Wildlife Festival that continues through Sunday.
October begins with dark skies on the heels of a black moon, ideal conditions for viewing deep-space objects, and offers monthlong meteor showers with a good chance of spotting a fireball.
This is a good month to view the Andromeda Galaxy, the home to more than a trillion stars that are 2.5 million light years away from our home.
Visitors to Cape Hatteras National Seashore are invited along to watch rangers excavate hatched sea turtle nests. If they’re lucky, they might even see a baby turtle scurry to the sea.
For some birds, the “fall” migration actually starts in July and August when they leave northern nesting grounds and head south looking for more food.
The North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores last week opened its tanks to five injured or sick baby turtles, the first of the nesting season. Many more are expected.
The Perseid meteor shower will be the main show in the night sky through mid-August, and experts think this year’s display will be particularly spectacular.
July will begin with Jupiter, Mars and Saturn all prominent in the evening sky and will end with two meteor showers, the Delta Aquairids and the Perseids.
The triangle formed by Mars, Saturn and Antares will continue to parade across the southern sky this month. And Saturn will be about as bright as it gets.