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Golden Leonids shower down as Earth rolls through comet's tail

Streaking starlets enthrall goggling skyvoyeurs

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Vids Amateur astronomers were out in force over the weekend to snap pics of The Leonids, an annual spectacular meteor shower.

The Leonids stream down every year in mid-November. They are debris from the comet Tempel-Tuttle, which visits the inner solar system every 33 years and leaves a stream of dusty space rocks called meteoroids in its wake.

Many of the particles, jettisoned from the comet as its frozen gases are heated by the Sun, drift across the November portion of Earth's orbit. From the planet's surface, these appear as meteors flying out of the constellation Leo, hence their name The Leonids.

This year's shower show peaked on Saturday night and offered a relatively good performance as the Moon was in its crescent phase, and set in the west long before Leo rose in the night sky, preventing its reflected light from washing out the meteors. ®

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