See Up to 50 Shooting Stars Per Hour As the Eta Aquarid Meteor Shower Peaks This Weekend

But you’ll have to wake up early.

<p>Getty Images </p>

Getty Images

The conditions are just about perfect for this weekend’s Eta Aquarid meteor shower peak, a spectacle known to produce up to 50 shooting stars per hour — but you’ll have to wake up early.

The meteor shower peaks Sunday and Monday night, and is best visible between 3 a.m. local time and dawn, according to

Unlike last year, when the bright moon washed out the Eta Aquarids, this year’s peak coincides with a 10 percent illuminated waning crescent moon. That means optimal dark skies and even better shooting star odds.

Here’s everything to know about the powerful Eta Aquarid meteor shower, from where to watch to how to spot it.

What Is the Eta Aquarid Meteor Shower?

This annual display, which is active from April 15 to May 27, 2024, is known for its speedy meteors that zip through the sky at up to 148,000 miles per hour, according to NASA. A glowing train is the signature of these quick meteors, which stem from Halley’s Comet.

During the May 5 to 6 peak, stargazers can expect to see around 50 shooting stars in the southern hemisphere, where the shower is most visible. Those in the northern hemisphere can still enjoy a flurry of roughly 10 to 30 meteors per hour, too, according to

How to Watch the Eta Aquarid Meteor Shower

The Eta Aquarids will be visible near the Aquarius constellation, which rises above the southeastern horizon around 3 a.m. local time late this weekend, according to stargazing app SkySafari. To watch it, find a viewing location with minimal obstructions to the southeast horizon; a lake or hilltop is ideal.

Additionally, choose a stargazing perch with minimal light pollution — such as a dark-sky park or hotel. Temperatures may be rising, but given the time of day, it’s best to pack warm clothes, gloves, a blanket, and a red-light headlamp to be safe.

And, while the Eta Aquarids aren’t known for their fireballs (meteors that are brighter, and more colorful, than usual), don’t forget to report any you do see to the American Meteor Society to further their research.

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