A METEOR shower could be seen in North Devon skies this evening, according to astronomy experts.
Up to 60 shooting stars could be seen within in an hour in the UK as the annual Perseids meteor shower crosses into the earth’s atmosphere.
Stargazers will need only their own eyes to enjoy the natural occurrence, which is a result of material falling from the tail of Comet Swift-Tuttle, which last passed near the Earth in 1992.
Professor Alan Fitzsimmons, of Queen’s University Belfast, said: “Comet Swift-Tuttle won’t be visiting our neck of the woods again until the year 2125, but every year we get this beautiful reminder as the Earth ploughs through the debris it leaves in its orbit.”
“Every meteor is a speck of comet dust vaporising as it enters our atmosphere at 36 miles per second. What a glorious way to go.”
The best display will last from late this evening through to early tomorrow morning, with weather conditions expected to be favourable.
Matt Dobson, a forecaster with MeteoGroup, the weather division of the Press Association, said: “It’s looking pretty good for people to have a chance to see the meteor shower across large parts of the country with a lot of clear skies expected on Monday night.
“We are expecting it to be clearest in parts of central and southern England and also in the east of Wales, with clear spells coming and going from dusk onward.
“It should be a little bit cloudier in western parts of the country such as Cornwall, Devon, the west of Wales, Cumbria and western Scotland.
“The best thing for star gazers to do is obviously to get away from any sources of light in big cities.”
Meteors, commonly known as shooting stars, are the result of small particles entering the Earth’s atmosphere at high speed.
These heat the air around them, causing the characteristic streak of light seen from the ground.
They mostly appear as fleeting flashes lasting less than a second, but the brightest ones leave behind trails of vaporised gases and glowing air molecules that may take a few seconds to fade.
The Perseids meteor shower is active each year from around mid-July to late-August, but for most of that period only a few meteors an hour will be visible.
If you spot the meteor shower in North Devon this evening, please get in touch and send your photos to email@example.com