Lunar eclipse in North America tonight


This video says about itself:

23 January 2017

A penumbral lunar eclipse will take place on February 10-11, 2017, the first of two lunar eclipses in 2017.

A penumbral eclipse is a tease, with none of the Moon entering Earth’s dark umbra as happens. But the one that occurs on February 10-11 will be about the best penumbral eclipse possible, as the Moon’s northern limb will miss the umbra by only about 100 miles (160 km). So the penumbral shading will be obvious.

This is a very deep penumbral eclipse. It has a penumbral eclipse magnitude of 0.9884 and a penumbral eclipse duration of 259.2 minutes.

During this type of eclipse the Moon will darken slightly but not completely.

The ideal spot to watch this penumbral eclipse is from Europe, Africa, Greenland and Iceland where the whole eclipse takes place at late night in a dark sky. For the most of of North America, the moon will be in eclipse at moonrise (sunset) on February 10 and will be obscured by evening twilight. In Asia, the eclipse will be obscured by morning twilight on February 11 and will be in eclipse at moonset (sunrise) February 11.

The penumbral lunar eclipse will be visible from Europe, most of Asia, Africa and most of North America.

Regions seeing, at least, some parts of the eclipse: Europe, much of Asia, Africa, North America, South America, Pacific, Atlantic, Indian Ocean, Arctic, Antarctica.

Clips, images credit: ESO, ESA/HUBBLE & NASA/JPL

From eNature Blog in the USA:

Watch The Moon Disappear Before Your Eyes—Don’t Miss This Friday’s Lunar Eclipse!

Posted on Tuesday, February 07, 2017 by eNature

There’s a penumbral lunar eclipse happening across all of North America the evening of Friday, February 10th.

The full moon will get noticeably less bright as it moves out of the sun’s direct light and into the Earth’s shadow shortly afternoon sundown on the East Coast.

What Exactly Is A Penumbral Eclipse?

The shadow of the Earth can be divided into two distinctive parts: the umbra and penumbra.

Within the umbra, there is no direct light from the sun. However, as a result of the Sun’s large size compared to the Earth, some solar illumination “bends” around the earth and is only partially blocked in the outer portion of the Earth’s shadow. That outer portion is called the penumbra.

Think of the shadow the Earth makes from the sun’s light as looking a bit like a dart board— with the dark umbra as the bulls eye and the less dark penumbra as the first circle surrounding the bulls eye.

A penumbral eclipse occurs when the moon passes through the Earth’s penumbra. The penumbra causes a subtle but clearly visible darkening of the moon’s surface.

A special type of penumbral eclipse is a total penumbral eclipse, during which the Moon lies exclusively within the Earth’s penumbra. Total penumbral eclipses are rare, and when these occur, that portion of the moon which is closest to the umbra can appear somewhat darker than the rest of the moon.

During Friday’s eclipse most, but not quite all, of the moon will enter the penumbra and observers should see a distinct darkening of the moon as the Earth’s shadow reduces the amount of sunlight hitting the moon.

It’s Safe And Easy To Observe

Unlike a solar eclipse, which can be viewed only from a certain relatively small area of the world, a lunar eclipse may be viewed from anywhere on the night side of the Earth. A lunar eclipse lasts for a few hours, whereas a total solar eclipse lasts for only a few minutes at any given place, due to the smaller size of the Moon’s shadow.

Also unlike solar eclipses, lunar eclipses are safe to view without any eye protection or special precautions, as they are dimmer than the full moon.

It Starts Around Dinner Time

The eclipse will start to be noticeable a bit after 6:00 PM on the East coast (it actually begins at 5:32 PM) when the Moon’s leading edge enters Earth’s penumbra. You can do the math and see the timing is a little less friendly for readers on the West coast— but things should be be quite visible if the sky is clear.

The eclipse will last more than four hours and will be visible early Saturday in Europe, Africa and western Asia as well as North America.

Initially, the effect is not especially noticeable. You won’t start to see a dusky fringe along the Moon’s leading edge (known to astronomers as its “celestial east”) until the the moon intrudes about halfway across the penumbra. But keep an eye on the moon and your patience will be rewarded.

Watch Online If Your Local Weather Doesn’t Cooperate

If the weather isn’t so nice, or you just prefer to watch from the comfort of home, SLOOH will broadcast a live webcast. The webcast will start at 5:30 PM. EDT and you can watch it by clicking here.

There’s A Comet Out There Too!

Comet 45P will zip by Earth early Saturday morning. It will be an extremely close encounter as these things go, passing within 7.7 million miles (12.4 million kilometers) of Earth moving at 14.2 miles per second, or an eye-popping 51,120 mph.

The comet, glowing green, will be visible in the constellation Hercules. Binoculars and telescopes will help in the search as it will be quite difficult to see unassisted.

Astronomers have been tracking Comet 45P for the past couple of months. The icy ball — an estimated mile across — comes around every five years. It’s officially known as Comet 45P/Honda-Mrkos-Pajdusakova, named after the Japanese, Czech and Slovak astronomers who discovered it in 1948. The letter P stands for periodic, meaning it’s a recurring visitor to the inner solar system.

Regardless of the hour, you’ll not regret making time to catch one of nature’s best shows!

What are your plans for watching the eclipse? Or catching the comet? We’re planning to keep the kids up here…

Use Time and Date’s Eclipse Calculator to see when it’s visible in your town.

Ring-billed gull video


This is a ring-billed gull video. The video is from the Netherlands, where this North American species is a rare vagrant.

Bird migration in the Americas


This video from the USA says about itself:

5 December 2016

Habitat loss throughout the Americas is threatening entire suites of migratory birds. Flyways are fraught with growing, man-made threats: wind energy projects sited in migratory pathways, toxic pesticides, reflective windows, free-roaming cats.

Falling bird numbers tell the story. If you have been a bird lover for a while, you have noticed. Migratory birds are in trouble, and we must act. Will you donate today to help us lift up migratory birds? Your gift between now and December 31 will be matched dollar-for-dollar up to $500,000.

Reddish egret video


This video says about itself:

Reddish Egret

20 July 2016

Video by Kris Wiktor/Shutterstock.

Reddish egrets live in north and central America.

North American shorebirds’ migration


This video from Kansas in the USA says about itself:

Half of All North American Shorebirds Use This Rest Stop

18 November 2016

Cheyenne Bottoms is the nation’s largest inland marsh, an area of over 60 square miles. It’s also the favored resting spot of many species of migrating birds, from pelicans to 27 species of ducks.

From: AERIAL AMERICA: The Great Plains.

Painted buntings on migration


This video from the USA says about itself:

15 November 2016

Spectacular Painted Buntings – the most colorful songbirds in North America – have returned on their winter 2016 -2017 migration. They first started passing through in late October and the first mature males have recently been spotted. Always exciting to see while dozens pass through the Backyard on their way further south usually only about 4 to 8 spend the winter here and stay until April.

Grizzly bears using trees to remove winter coats


This video from North America says about itself:

Pole dancing bearsPlanet Earth II: Mountains Preview – BBC One

13 nov. 2016

Programme website: here. Camera traps reveal how grizzly bears rub against trees to scratch those hard to reach places.