Soaring through space

Vikas Chander from Delhi, India

The Seagull Nebula spans the constellations of Canis Major and Monoceros. Its head is the emission nebula IC 2177 and its broad, billowing wings are part of Sharpless 2–296. Note the bow shock around the star FN Canis Majoris, which forms as the star plows through surrounding gas, like the waves off the bow of a ship. A 2019 study found that this star was one of three runaway stars in region, suggesting that each of them were ejected when their companions went supernova — and that the wings of the Seagull are an expanding shell of debris from these explosions. This Hubble-palette image was taken with a 6-inch scope from Rio Hurtado, Chile, with 30 hours of total integration.