Universe Guide

Apus, Bird of Paradise Constellation

Apus Constellation Star Map

Apus (Pronounciation:A-pus, Abbrev:Aps, Latin:Apodis) is a constellation, one of 88 constellations that the night sky is divided into. The sky is not divided up equally between the constellations. Apus takes up 206.327 sq. degrees of the night sky which equates to 0.5% of the night sky. Apus is the 67th largest in terms of size in the night sky.

The constellation name means Bird of Paradise . It was not one of the original constellations that had been devised by Ptolemy, instead it was created by Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser and Frederick de Houtman years later.

There are 3 stars that make up the main constellation. The hipparcos satellite scanned and detailed 701 stars. There are 21 stars that can be seen with the naked eye in the constellation on a very clear night sky.

Apus is not a member of the Zodiac group of twelve constellations that appear when the Sun sets. Apus is a southern hemispheric constellation which means it can't be seen easily or at all from the northern hemisphere.

There are 6 Extrasolar Planets (Exoplanets) in this constellation that are detailed on this site. There is a dedicated page for exoplanets in Apus.

There are no deep space objects that were identified by Charles Messier in this constellation. There are no non-Messier deep space objects in this constellation that are covered at present on this site.

The image at the top right of this page was generated using Night Vision, a free to use and download application by Brian Simspon.

Distance to Apus

You can't just go to one location and arrive at the constellation because the constellation is made up of stars at different locations and different distances. The nearest main star in the constellation is at a distance of 156.28 light years and the furthest main star is a distance of 446.80 light years. The average distance to the main stars is 253.35 light years.

Apus Star Facts

The caveat of these stars are that they are catalogued on this site. If you know of a star that is nearer or further then do let me know in the comments and I'll add it to the site. The stars mentioned are from the Hipparcos catalogue or have been added because of their special status.

HIP 76362, Apus's Nearest Star

The nearest star to Earth is HIP 76362 which is roughly about 42.69 Light Years from the Earth. The nearest star to the Earth with an exoplanet is HD 134606 which is about 86.42 Light Years.

HIP 73871, Apus's Furthest Star

The furthest star that is located in the constellation is HIP 73871 and it is 54360.56 light years away from the Sun. The furthest figure is derived from either the 1997 or 2007 Hipparcos star catalogue parallax figure and it has been known to produce distances that are wrong.

Alpha Apodis, Brightest Star in Apus

The brightest star in Apus is Alpha Apodis and is located about 23.81 light years from the Sun. The star has a apparent magnitude of 3.83 but an absolute magnitude of -1.85 when the star is viewed from a distance of 10 Parsecs or 32.6 Light Years. The star is recognised as being the brightest in the constellation as it has the Bayer status of Alpha.

HD 138867, Apus's Dimmest Visible Star

The dimmest star that can be seen in Apus with the naked eye is HD 138867. The dim star has an apparent magnitude of 5.95. The dimmest star that a person is able to see with their naked eye is 6.0 magnitude based on the table in the reference. Ref: University of Michigan.

How to Find and View Apus in the Night Sky

Northern Hemisphere

Apus is a constellation that borders the Octans constellation which is the most southernly constellation we have. It is not possible to see the constellation from the Northern Hemisphere, sadly

Southern Hemisphere

The more south you are, the better the chance of seeing this constellation. It is a constellation that borders the Octans constellation. It can be seen as soon as it gets dark and is available all throughout the year.

Apus's Mythology

There is no Greek Legend behind this constellation. It was created by Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser and Frederick de Houtman to fill in the voids in the astronomical charts. Its name which means feetless is derived because the specimens of the bird had their feet removed.

Apus Facts

Is a Zodiac Sign No
Brightest StarAlpha Apodis
Area206.327 sq. deg.
Percentage of Night Sky0.5%
Size Position67th
Hemisphere Southern
Site Exoplanet Count6
Meteor Shower Count0
Nearest StarHIP 76362
Nearest Star with Exoplanet(s)HD 134606
Brightest StarAlpha Apodis
Dimmest StarHD 138867
Furthest StarHIP 73871
Bright Star Count21
Hipparcos Star Count701
Main Star Count3
Messier Deep Space Object Count0
Bordering / Neighbouring / Surrounding ConstellationsTriangulum Australe

*Note: The number of Non-Messier Deep Space Object Count relates to how many are covered on this site not how many there are.

List of Deep Space Objects (Galaxies, Nebulas, Supernovas, etc) in Apus

NameTypeDistanceDeclinationRight Ascension
NGC 5799Galaxy-72 25 58.05828512015 05 35m 2341636256
NGC 5612Spiral Galaxy-78 23 14.8514 34 01m 274
NGC 5833Spiral Galaxy-72 51 33.63163816215 11 53m 7657838188
NGC 5967Spiral Galaxy-75 40 22.41188635415 48 15m 8595285702
NGC 6101Open Globular Cluster-72 12 07.916 25 48m 12

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