"The Moon Meets Mars on Thanksgiving Eve, and; Our Annual '3 Cosmic Birds For Thanksgiving' Show"

Scheduled air date: 2001 Nov 12-18

The planet Mars is currently visible shortly after sunset to the South in the constellation Capricornus.  Next week the Waxing Crescent Moon will appear to approach and then pass Mars, closing to within 3.5 degrees below the red planet on the night of November 21st.
(Shown about an hour after sunset for mid-Northern latitudes.  Mars' position shown at three-day intervals.)

The Summer Triangle asterism can still be seen after sunset in the west.  Each of the three stars that mark the points of the triangle is a member of a separate constellation that is (or once was) representative of a bird.  Deneb is part of Cygnus the Swan, Altair is part of Aquila the Eagle, and Vega is part of Lyra the Lyre (or harp).  But until modern times, the stars of Lyra were known by various civilizations as such birds as a vulture, eagle, goose and more.

If you wish to view illustrations for other episodes, please see our Star Gazer Illustrated directory.

Illustrations on this page were created using TheSky Astronomy Software, an advanced desktop planetarium program designed for Windows.

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