• Timothy Johnson

Crescent Moon and Mars

Friday morning a thin crescent moon appears in the southeastern sky before sunrise. The moon is in the zodiacal constellation Scorpius and not far from the red planet Mars.

Mars is the brightest red object in the southern sky, but it isn’t the only one that is red. Mars is above the bright red star Antares, the brightest star in Scorpius.

The crescent moon is a perfect guide to finding Mars tomorrow morning. Mars appears just to the right of the moon. Antares appears underneath Mars. Together the three form an elongated triangle.

Mars will become a significant part of our evening sky this summer. In the weeks and months ahead, Mars will brighten considerably. The planet will be closest to the Earth at the end of July, bigger and brighter than it has been in more than a dozen years. The changes ahead will be incremental. You may not notice the brightening from night to night, but over the period of weeks it will clearly brighten. Plus it will be really convenient looking for Mars. It will be a big part of our evening sky with the arrival of summer. It will rise in the east at sunset in early July.

Mars won’t be as bright as Jupiter and Venus, but its ruby red color makes it a pleasant part of our night sky.


Sunrise and Sunset
Day Sunrise Sunset
Fri., Feb. 9 6:45 5:07
Sat., Feb. 10 6:44 5:08
Sun., Feb. 11 6:42 5:09
Mon., Feb. 12 6:41 5:10
Tues., Feb. 13 6:40 5:12
Wed., Feb. 14 6:38 5:13
Thurs., Feb. 15 6:37 5:14
Fri., Feb. 16 6:36 5:15

Temperatures and Precipitations
Day Max (Fº) Min (Fº) Inches
Feb. 2 46 33 *0.17
Feb. 3 33 12 0.11
Feb. 4 41 22 0.00
Feb. 5 49 40 1.08
Feb. 6 45 21 0.00
Feb. 7 36 28 0.00
Feb. 8 49 28 0.88


Water temperature in Edgartown harbor: 37º F


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