Hot on the heels of the April Lyrids, in May we get the eta Aquariids, meteors produced by the Earth’s encounter with debris from comet 1P/Halley. The eta Aquariids (ETA) are amongst the swiftest of all meteors, with geocentric velocities of 66 km/s and peak activity this year is expected in the early hours of May 6.
The ETAs are better seen from more southerly latitudes, where they produce a ZHR of ~50. From the UK and Ireland their radiant doesn’t rise until about 1:45 UT and it hugs the SE horizon, leaving a narrow observing window of a few hours until morning twilight, hence we see fewer ETAs. Their low-altitude radiant can produce distinctive long-pathed meteors as they streak across the sky.