The Deep Photographic Guide to the

The constellations of the month

Columba, Pictor

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Latin: Columba (Col), Pictor (Pic)
English: Dove, Painter Spanish: Paloma, Caballete del Pintor
German: Taube, Maler French: Colombe, Chevalet du Peintre

Columba (top) and Pictor (below) are constellations preferably for observers in the southern hemisphere. Pictor is a quite unconspicious constellation, but with an easy to find location between the bright star Canopus (alpha Car, lower left) and the Large Magellanic Cloud (just below the image border). Alpha Pic (lower left image corner) has a visual brightness of only 3.3 mag. Columba is about half way between Orion and the Large Magellanic Cloud. Its brightest star Phakt (alpha Col) has a visual brightness of 2.6 mag (see lines).

In mid of January the shown field culminates at about 10:00 pm local time. The declination of the constellation borders reaches from -64 to -27 degrees.

In this field Deep Sky observers can find the prominent globular cluster NGC 1851 in Columba, two fainter galaxies and the interesting fast moving Kapteyn's star (see magnifications).

© all photographs taken by Till Credner and Sven Kohle