March 28, 2021: The Worm Moon is in the east after sunset. Farther west, Mars marches eastward in Taurus. Use a binocular to see dimmer stars in the bright moonlight.
by Jeffrey L. Hunt
Chicago, Illinois: Sunrise, 6:40 a.m. CDT; Sunset, 7:12 p.m. CDT. Check local sources for sunrise and sunset times for your location.
This evening the bright moon’s light dominates the sky. It was Full at 1:48 p.m. CDT today. The Old Farmer’s Almanac calls this seasonal full moon, the Worm Moon. This moonlight makes it difficult to view the dimmer stars in the sky. To see more stars, stand in the shadow of a building, house, or other structure. For stars near the moon, hold up your hand to block its light as you would to shield your eyes from the sun.
An hour after sunset, the moon is only 10° up in the east. It is below Porrima.
Farther west, Mars is marching eastward in Taurus toward the horns, Elnath and Zeta Tauri (ζ Tau). It is now beyond Aldebaran and the two star clusters, Hyades and Pleiades.
Use a binocular to find it 2.3° above Tau Tauri (τ Tau) and 3.6° to the lower right of Iota Tauri (ι Tau).
Here’s more about Mars during 2021.
Read about Mars during March.
Detailed Note: One hour before sunrise Saturn is over 11° above the southeastern horizon, 11.4° to the upper right of bright Jupiter. The Jovian Giant is over 6° up in the east-southeast. Use a binocular to see the planets in front of the starry background. Saturn is 3.0° to the upper right of θ Cap, while Jupiter is 4.6° to the lower left of ι Cap. Farther west, the moon (15.0d, 100%) is nearly 14° up in the west. Because of its brightness, block the moon’s glare to spot Eta Virginis (η Vir, m = 3.9), 3.3° to the lower left of the moon, and Porrima (γ Vir, m = 3.4), 7.6° to the upper left of the lunar orb. The moon is Full (Worm Moon) at 1:48 p.m. CDT. One hour after sunset, the moon (15.6d, 100%) is less than 10° above the eastern horizon, 3.0° below Porrima. Farther west, Mars – over 50° up in the west-southwest – is 2.3° above τ Tau and 3.6° to the lower right of ι Tau. The planet is 9.0° below Elnath. Because of the bright moonlight, use a binocular to see Mars with the sidereal background.
Read more about the planets during March 2021.
October 5, 2021: Before sunrise, a very thin moon is visible in the eastern sky. The evening planet pack – Evening Star Venus, Jupiter, and Saturn – are visible at the same time after sundown.
October 29, 2021: Today is the date for equal daylight and equal darkness for about 42° north latitude. This is not to be confused with the autumnal equinox.
October 4, 2021: Before sunrise, the razor-thin lunar crescent is low in the eastern sky.
October 3, 2021: Before sunrise, the thin crescent moon is in the eastern sky, to the lower left of Regulus. After sunset, the planet pack – Evening Star Venus, Jupiter, and Saturn – shine brightly.
October 2, 2021: The crescent moon appears near the head of Leo in the eastern sky this morning before sunrise.