Meteor shower is set for AYRSHIRE skies tonight
A stunning display of shooting stars is set to appear in the skies over Britain this evening when the Draconid Meteor Shower peaks.
( pic via Earthsky.net)
The yearly spectacle gets its name from the constellation it often passes through, Draco the Dragon, and unlike most is best viewed around sunset.
The Draconids is the first of two annual meteor showers to happen this month, the second is the Orionids, which is a remnant of Halley's Comet.
The shooting stars that will plague the night skies are tiny bits of ice and rock which have fallen away from the famous comet.
According to the Met Office, the Orionid Meteor Shower has been in the skies since Sunday and will last until the start of November.
The forecaster said: "It will peak on 20 October, with up to 20 shooting stars per hour visible, providing it is a clear night.
"Orionid meteors are known to be very fast travelling at around 41 miles per second, and typically on the faint side.
"Although with clear, dark skies you still have a good chance of spotting one with its persistent, long trail.
"The Orionid Meteor Shower is named as such because it appears to radiate from the constellation Orion."
Once this has passed, stargazers will then be treated to the Leonid Meteor Shower, which is named after the constellation Leo.
According to Meteor Showers Online, the Leonids generally begin on 13 November and will peak four days later, with about 10 meteors per hour on the night.
Astronomers claim that when weather conditions are right, dozens of shooting stars can be seen falling from the sky.
But according to Sky's weather team, the only places clear enough to see the Draconids this evening will be north western Scotland and western parts of the Republic of Ireland.