Autumn according to the meteorological calendar begins in September and ends in November. In the astronomical calendar, the beginning of autumn is marked by the autumn equinox which occurs around the 22 September.
During the autumn equinox the sun shines directly on the equator and day and night around the globe are of almost equal length - a day and night of roughly 12 hours each.
Autumn is normally associated with dropping temperatures and the nights drawing in as winter approaches. In the UK autumn can often bring unsettled weather and towards the latter part of the season can often bring stormy conditions with strong gales due to Atlantic depressions moving over the UK.
The word equinox comes from the Latin equi (meaning equal) and nox (meaning night) accounting for the equinox marking the time when day and night are of equal length.
We often notice the nights begin to draw in from this point as after the Autumn equinox, the night longer than the day, until this is reversed at the Spring equinox.
A study in the Journal of Aging Research found that babies born during the autumn months are more likely to live to 100 than those born during the rest of the year.
Their study found that 30% of US centenarians born during 1880-1895 were born in the autumn months.