March Constellations


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This view spans most of the sky as seen on spring nights. The dominating feature of the sky at this time continues to be the brilliant "winter" stars - the brightest collection of constellations in the sky.

The western side of this stellar collection includes the Pleiades and Hyades star clusters, joining the bright orange star Aldebaran in marking Taurus the bull. A giant man-shaped group, Orion the hunter, is seen just southeast of Taurus, with the red Betelgeuse and blue Rigel among it's stars. Three stars mark the belt of the hunter; extending this line to the southeast, we come to Sirius, the brightest night time star of all.

[More on the constellations below...]

Sirius marks Canis Major, the great dog, and therefore is sometimes known as the "dog star"; north of Sirius is another bright star, Procyon, marking Canis Minor the little dog. The north part of the rich winter stars is marked by Capella in Auriga the chariot driver and the twin stars Castor and Pollux pointing out Gemini.

Other bright star patterns are rising in the east; the big dipper, part of Ursa Major the Great Bear, is now visible in the northeast, and Regulus announces the arrival of Leo the lion; just west of him, you may have missed faint Cancer the crab.

To see the constellation names and read more about them, click on "constellations in depth", below.
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