Cone & Fox Fur

A Celestial Fox (and cone, and Christmas tree…)

This image contains a few things! At the bottom is the Cone Nebula, at the upper-right is the “Fox Fur Nebula”, and in the middle is the “Christmas Tree” star cluster… you have to flip the image upside down to see that one.

It’s a gorgeous region of active star formation in the constellation Monoceros. All that red Hydrogen gas is fueling these new stars, while those same newborn stars blast it away to yield these interesting swirls and patterns. To the left of the “fox” is a bluish region reflected by the bright star in the middle of it.

This was shot over two nights from Merritt Island, FL, using a combination of narrowband Hydrogen-alpha filtered data and visible RGB filters to yield true colors.

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