1. 80 Shooting Stars Per Hour to Ring in the New Year With January Stargazing Spectacular
As the New Year celebrations finish up, the first meteor shower of the year promises to be one of the most impressive. They’re called the Quadrantids, and on the morning of January 4th, one can expect to see 80 shooting stars per hour.
This is not an event to stay up to see, but rather one you wake up early to see, as the peak hours will occur before sunrise on Thursday morning. Look to the northern half of the sky, and bring something hot to drink!
A relatively quiet month for stargazing events, a good opportunity to see Saturn and her famous rings will come around on January 14th. A sub-crescent moon just 3 days old will be faintly lit when our satellite comes to within 56 degrees of separation with Saturn—the perfect opportunity to pull out some binoculars or a telescope and gaze at the planet’s rings.
January 25th is the night of a full “Wolf Moon,” which will rise from the northeastern horizon around sunset that evening.
2. The Year of the Wood Dragon Approaches: Prepare for Growth and Advancement
On February 10th, the Lunar New Year will herald the end of the year of the Water Rabbit and the beginning of the year of the Wood Dragon.
A being of natural perfection, the dragon symbolizes so much in Chinese mythology and astrology, and is believed to be the single most important creature. As such, the Year of the Dragon is rich in symbolism and hope.
The Chinese zodiacal calendar follows a 12-year cycle, with each year corresponding to an animal whom legend says the Jade Emperor invited to a running race. Furthermore, each animal has five elemental incarnations that follow a 60-year cycle.
This year is the Year of the Dragon, and it is the end of the 60-year cycle for the wood element, making this the year of the Wood Dragon.
3. This Golden Retriever is Nursing 3 African Painted Dog Pups at Indiana Zoo After Mother Abandoned Them
At the Potawatomi Zoo in Indiana, a mama golden retriever has her paws as full as can be these days looking after a huge litter of pups—but half aren’t hers.
The zoo had the unhappy issue of an African painted dog who was a first-time mom and wasn’t displaying the level of care required to raise her litter of 8 pups. The zoo’s canine team knew they had to act fast.
The group wanted to use a surrogate mother, because the African painted dog relies on the social group into which it was born. The Indiana Council for Animal Welfare connected the zoo with a golden retriever named Kassy who just gave birth to a litter of her own.