At 0644 on 31 March 2022 the Eastern sky brought us an unusual sight: low in the sky a crescent Moon, right beside mighty Jupiter. Arrayed above them, Venus, Saturn and Mars. My photos don’t do them justice.
To keep an eye on the sky, you might find Stellarium Web Online Star Map very useful. Set your location in the bottom left corner (search for Waikawa Beach) and set the time in the bottom right corner.
Hooray for our dark skies.
There are a number of Māori names for the planets. Mercury is Whiro. Venus is Kōpū, but Tāwera as the morning star and Meremere-tū-ahiahi as the evening star. Earth is Te Ao, and the moon is Marama. Mars is Matawhero, Jupiter is Hine-i-tīweka or Pareārau, also a name for Saturn. Because Uranus is barely visible to the naked eye, and Neptune and Pluto were only discovered once telescopes became available, they do not have traditional Māori names.