Venus and Saturn

Our skies at night have two planetary visitors. Venus is high in the western sky after sunset, and at the same time there is the ringed planet, Saturn, rising in the east. Both are bright and easy to spot.

Venus

Venus, the brightest planet in our evening sky, is getting a bit more difficult to spot, appearing lower in the western sky than a week ago. The planet is sinking. By April, Venus shifts from an evening planet to a morning planet.

Spring is Here

Today is the first day of spring and it arrived precisely at 7:44 a.m. This is the moment when the noontime sun crosses from the Southern Hemisphere, across the Equator, and into our Northern Hemisphere. From here on our days will get longer than our nights. Day and night are about even, at 12 hours, though the actual moment of sunrise and sunset is not so exact.

Venus

It was only a few weeks ago that Venus was high in the western sky at sunset. We got a number of calls from observers who wondered what that bright planet was residing high in the west after sunset. Tonight you can’t find it in the night sky.

Old Full Moon

The one-day old Full Moon appears tonight in the zodiacal constellation Libra. The moon is already moving into the constellations we associate with summer. On Sunday night, the moon appears low in the Southern sky, in the zodiacal constellation Scorpius. The red star Antares appears nearby.

Moon Amid the Planets

The crescent moon moves amid the planets early in the week, but only early-morning risers will have the best view.

Fleeting Mercury

The hardest planet to see could be easy to spot tonight and tomorrow night. Mercury appears low in the southwestern sky after sunset, in the familiar star cluster Pleiades.

Honey Moon

Tomorrow is the full moon, known this month as the Honey Moon. The moon rises in the east at about the time the sun sets in the west and is in the zodiacal constellation Libra.

Rings High Above

The ringed planet Saturn hangs high in the evening sky. On one of the clearest evenings the Vineyard has had this month, we had no trouble finding the planet right under the zodiacal constellation Leo. The planet is not as bright as we’ve seen in past years.

Crescent Moon

A thin crescent moon will appear low in the western sky early in the evening on Monday. Only those with an excellent view of the western sky have a good chance of seeing it then, so consider a beach stroll at Menemsha, an ideal spot.

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