DENVER (CBS4) – Many sharp-eyed Coloradans spotted what looked like a meteor in the clear night skies just before dawn Wednesday morning.

The Denver Museum of Nature & Science has a roof-mounted camera that records the sky at night. In its video recording at 6 a.m. what was being describing as a fireball was visible. The apparent speed and the direction from north to the west were consistent with a meteor, and experts NASA later confirmed that it was in fact a meteor.

An image from the Denver Museum of Nature & Science's recording (credit: CBS)

An image from the Denver Museum of Nature & Science’s recording (credit: CBS)

NASA estimated the meteor was about 2 to 4 pounds and was traveling across the sky at 45,000 mph.

“There has been some activity lately. There is not a meteor shower currently occurring, but there has been an increase in activity all over the world in meteor sightings recently,” the museum’s earth and space science educator Samantha Richards told CBS4.

With that news, the big question is: Do we know why?

“We’re not sure why yet, but hopefully they’ll be able to find out soon. The more people report what they’ve seen and the more scientists can investigate videos we’ll be able to know more about where they’re coming from and that might explain why.”

Meteors are made up of all different kinds of materials, but often iron and nickel in them leads to colorful streaks across the night sky.

Additional Resources

You can learn more about reporting a fireball in the night sky on a special section of the Denver Museum of Nature & Science website.