Last chances to take part in the 2020 star count!

It’s the last few days for the star count – will you take part?

The count runs from 21st to 28th February. How? 

  1. Pick a clear night & when it is dark enough, usually from 7pm onwards.
  2. look for the constellation of Orion in the south, (see picture above)
  3. Count how many stars you see in the ‘box’, including the 3 bright stars of Orion’s belt but not the 4 corner stars.
  4. send your results to https://www.cpre.org.uk/get-involved/take-action/star-count-2020/

The less stars you can see, the greater the amount of light pollution in your area. Light pollution is a problem for people and wildlife alike. Earlier this month I wrote about the effect of light pollution on moths & the disruption to their pollination activities.

Light pollution is still a growing problem even here on the edges of the word’s 5th Dark Sky reserve, the Brecon Beacons National Park.

I counted only 19 stars this year - this may sound a lot but in a rural area, we should be able to count upwards of 25.

By 9.30pm Orion was easy to see in the southern sky but the reflected light from Abergavenny made it hard to see as many stars. In 2014 I was living on the Herefordshire side of the Black Mountains and counted 35..

If you see 10 stars or less, you are in an area of severe light pollution. There are things you can do to combat light pollution in your area – see more at britastro.org/dark-skies/