When to watch for meteor shower with up to 100 shooting stars an hour

The Lyrid meteor shower takes place in April. Picture: Getty Images/iStockphoto

The Lyrid meteor shower takes place in April. Picture: Getty Images/iStockphoto - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

The Lyrid meteor shower which takes place in April is set to be one of the most spectacular all year.

The shower is active from around April 16 but will peak between nightfall on April 21 and dawn on April 22 this year.

Like most Meteor showers, the Lyrid occurs when particles of comet debris enter our atmosphere and burn up, appearing as shooting stars.

It’s known as the Lyrid shower as the shooting stars appear to originate from a point in the constellation Lyra.

While the peak of the shower won’t be until the early hours of April 22, there’s a good chance you’ll see shooting stars during the later part of the evening so you won’t have to stay up too late to catch a glimpse.

You are likely to see around 10 - 15 shooting stars and hour during the shower but the Lyrid is known for unexpected surges where it’s possible there will be as many as 100.

Shooting stars will stand out vividly in dark skies due to the almost invisible phase of the moon on April 21.

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The shower will be visible to the naked eye so there is no need for any equipment, just let your eyes adjust to the dark and look out for fast and bright meteors with fine trains.

Due to the coronavirus lockdown you will have to watch from your garden if you have one, or from a window if the view allows.

Views will be clearest from rural locations away from sources of light pollution such as street lights and where you can scan the whole sky.