Sunday, 1 September 2013

Avon Wildlife Safari Day 45 - Explore the night sky.

Today I'm giving another quick plug for the fabulous At Bristol but this time I would encourage you to visit the Planetarium and see the Summer Night Sky Planetarium Show. I've lost count of the times I've been camping and marveled at the night sky but beyond 'The Plough' I'm pretty lost.

'The Plough' constellation
This is a chance to discover how to navigate around the cosmos, explore far-off planets and identify some colourful stars at this presenter-led show. If you enjoy the show and fancy doing some 'real-life' star-gazing then take a look on the Bristol Astronomical Society's website as they host a variety of 'observing events' throughout the year in the local area and have a wealth of information to help you explore the skies above.
Meanwhile study the chart below and take a look out of your bedroom window to see what you can identify - you might find a compass helpful to find the correct constellations.

A lot of nocturnal wildlife also use the sky to help them navigate around the land. It is thought the moths use the moon as an aid to help them find their way around. With the fairly recent introduction of electrical light this could explain why they are so attracted to the bright lights in our houses. This must be not only a hazard due to the heat of the bulbs but also a real disruption to their nightly journeys looking for food.

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