What’s Up in the April Sky?

April’s Evening Planets:

Mercury will be up until around 8 PM in the last week of April, moving between Cetus the Sea Monster and Taurus the Bull. Red Mars will be up until around midnight moving between Taurus the Bull and Gemini the Twins. Uranus is in Cetus the Sea Monster until 10 PM and earlier every night until 8 PM by the end of the month.

April’s Evening Stars:

The Winter Triangle will be up until around 11 PM, and setting earlier every night: Sirius, the brightest star viewed from Earth is in Canis Major the Great Dog, Betelgeuse is in Orion the Hunter, and Procyon is in Canis Minor the Small Dog. Spot Capella in Auriga the Charioteer, Arcturus in Bootes the Herdsman, Regulus in Leo the Lion, Spica in Virgo the Virgin, and bright Castor and Pollux in Gemini the Twins. Also find the stars of constellations Cassiopeia, Cepheus, Hercules, Cancer, Perseus, Draco, Virgo, Leo, Hydra, and Ursa Major and Ursa Minor (the Big and Little Dippers).

April’s Morning Planets:

Bright Venus will be up for about 0ne hour after sunset in the second half of April, moving between Cetus the Sea monster and Taurus the Bull. Mercury will be up as of 6 AM in Pisces the Fish in the first week of the month. Find Jupiter in Aquarius the Water bearer as of 5 AM and earlier every night. Saturn will be in Capricornus the Sea-goat the Archer as of 4 AM and rising earlier every night. Neptune is in Aquarius the Water Bearer as of 6 AM. Dwarf Pluto is in Sagittarius the Archer as of 4 AM and lingering until morning.

April ’s Morning Stars:

The Summer Triangle of Vega in Lyra the Harp, Deneb in Cygnus the Swan, and Altair in Aquila the Eagle will be up until sunrise. Look for reddish Antares in Scorpius the Scorpion, Arcturus in Boötes the Herdsman, and Spica in Virgo the Maiden, along with the stars of constellations Leo, Hercules, Serpens, Libra, Cassiopeia, Ophiuchus, Cepheus, Pegasus, Andromeda, Draco, and Ursa Major and Ursa Minor (the Big and Little Dippers).

April Skylights:

April 4: Last quarter Moon at 6:00 AM

April 5: Moon lines up with Saturn, Jupiter, predawn

April 11: New Moon at 10:30 PM

April 12: Betelgeuse, Mars, Capella, and Polis line up (11 PM)

April 14: Moon at apogee (252,300 miles away)

April 20: First Quarter Moon at 2:58 AM

April 22: Lyrid meteor shower peaks, predawn

April 26: Full Moon, first supermoon of 2021 at 11:30 PM

April 27: Moon at perigee (222,000 miles away)

Times given in EDT.

Resources

Download Ken Graun’s April 2021 sky chart for reference and observing ideas.
Another equally helpful resource is Skymaps’ monthly evening sky chart, available for different hemispheres. Download The Evening Sky Map for April.

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