If you see fireballs streaking across the night sky this week, don’t panic: It’s just the annual visit from the Taurid meteor shower.
“The Taurids are not known for their high numbers, rather they are known more for the fireballs they produce,” the American Meteor Society said in a statement.
Fireballs are just extremely bright meteors, Space.com’s Joe Rao added.
The Taurid shower generally shoots about two to 10 meteors across the sky per hour, the society said. Though the meteors can be seen anytime in late October through November, this year’s peak will be Nov. 5-12. They will be visible in North America.
This will be a good year for the Taurids, as there won’t be a full moon to brighten the sky and disrupt the view, Rao said.
“The annual Taurid meteor shower is going on right now, and we are seeing steady activity in our meteor cameras,” said Bill Cooke, head of the NASA Meteoroid Environments Office. “Individuals should not be surprised if they see a bright meteor or fireball over the next few nights.”
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SOURCE: USA Today, Doyle Rice and Elizabeth Weise