Universe Guide

Home / Facts / Constellations

Canis Major Constellation

Canis Major (Pronounciation:Can-iss May-jore, Abbrev:CMa, Latin:Canis Majoris) is a constellation, one of 88 constellations that the night sky is divided into. The sky is not divided up equally between the constellations. Canis Major takes up 380.118 sq. degrees of the night sky which equates to 0.92% of the night sky. The constellation gets its name as it name means The Big Dog . The constellation is one of the original constellations that was devised by the Ancient Greco-Egyptian astronomer Ptolemy who lived between 90 A.D. and 168 A.D.

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

The brightest star in Canis Major is Sirius. There are 10 Extrasolar Planets (Exoplanets) in this constellation that are detailed on this site. The current largest star so far identified in the constellation of Canis Major is VY Canis Majoris.

Canis Major Star and Deep Space Object Count

The number of stars that have been catalogued as part of the Hipparcos Star Catalogue from Canis Major is 1371. The number of stars that are of magnitude 6.0 or lower in the constellation is 90. The number of stars in the constellation that make up the outline is 8.

There are 1 deep space objects that were identified by Charles Messier in this constellation. There are 1 non-Messier deep space objects that are covered on this site and the list is below.

Stars of Interest

The nearest star to Earth is Sirius which is roughly about 8.6 Light Years from the Earth. The nearest star to the Earth with an exoplanet is Nu2 Canis Majoris which is about 64.42 Light Years. The furthest star that can be located in the constellation is HIP 34074 which is located about 326163.3 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.

The dimmest star that can be seen in Canis Major with the naked eye is OS Canis Majoris. The dim star has an apparent magnitude of 6. 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

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.

Constellation Legend

Canis Major usually refers to one of Orion's hunting dogs who help him fight Taurus or pursuing Lepus the hare.

There are no major meteor showers that radiate from within this constellation.

Canis Major Facts

NameCanis Major
Is a Zodiac Sign No
Largest StarVY Canis Majoris
Brightest StarSirius
Area380.118 sq. deg.
Percentage of Night Sky0.92%
Size Position43rd
Hemisphere Southern
Site Exoplanet Count10
Meteor Shower Count8
Nearest StarSirius
Nearest Star with Exoplanet(s)Nu2 Canis Majoris
Dimmest StarOS Canis Majoris
Furthest StarHIP 34074
Bright Star Count90
Hipparcos Star Count1371
Main Star Count8
Messier Deep Space Object Count1
*Non-Messier Deep Space Object Count1
Bordering / Neighbouring / Surrounding ConstellationsMonoceros

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

Canis Major Constellation Map

Canis Major Constellation Star Map

The map was generated using Night Vision, an awesome free application by Brian Simpson.

List of Stars with Exoplanets in Canis Major

StarDistance (Lt. Yrs.)Exoplanet CountDeclinationRight Ascension
HD 43197183.651-29d 53` 50.306h 13m 35.56
HD 4518471.371-28d 46` 47.306h 24m 43.99
HD 45364106.622-31d 28` 51.306h 25m 38.44
HD 47186129.122-27d 37` 18.006h 36m 08.77
HD 47366260.932-12d 59` 05.306h 37m 40.79
HD 47536402.172-32d 20` 23.606h 37m 47.54

List of Named Stars in Canis Major without Extrasolar Planets

As there's so many stars in the cosmos, not all the stars are listed here. The site has lots of stars not listed so if your star isn't listed and you know the Henry Draper or Hipparcos ID, type https://www.universeguide.com/star/ then followed by the HIPNNNNNN or HDNNNN where NNNNN is the number part of the name. The stars that I do list have either a traditional name, a bayer or other classification name.

StarDistance (Lt. Yrs.)DeclinationRight Ascension
10 Canis Majoris3624.04-31d 04` 13.906h 44m 28.47
11 Canis Majoris795.52-14d 25` 33.606h 46m 51.09
12 Canis Majoris787.83-21d 00` 55.506h 47m 01.49
15 Canis Majoris1217.03-20d 13` 27.306h 53m 32.91
17 Canis Majoris504.12-20d 24` 17.506h 55m 02.74
26 Canis Majoris838.47-25d 56` 33.407h 12m 12.22
27 Canis Majoris1734.91-26d 21` 09.107h 14m 15.22
Adhara405.17-28d 58` 19.506h 58m 37.55
Aludra1988.80-29d 18` 11.207h 24m 05.71
EZ Canis Majoris4530.05-23d 55` 42.106h 54m 13.05
FN Canis Majoris3048.26-11d 17` 38.507h 06m 40.77
FR Canis Majoris1101.90-11d 46` 23.706h 21m 24.72
FU Canis Majoris2104.28-22d 07` 08.707h 00m 19.36
Furud362.40-30d 03` 48.206h 20m 18.79
FV Canis Majoris6939.65-23d 50` 26.607h 07m 22.59
FY Canis Majoris1249.67-23d 05` 09.707h 26m 59.49
FZ Canis Majoris1353.37-11d 27` 11.607h 02m 42.62
GU Canis Majoris1449.61-11d 18` 03.407h 01m 49.51
GY Canis Majoris3397.53-27d 21` 22.907h 13m 36.45
GZ Canis Majoris1289.18-16d 43` 00.007h 16m 19.21
HR 25011896.30-30d 56` 56.406h 45m 31.19
HR 2680840.63-30d 39` 20.607h 06m 00.49
HR 2724805.34-27d 28` 29.107h 12m 24.18
HR 28002489.80-26d 57` 49.907h 20m 54.92
Iota Canis Majoris2508.95-17d 03` 15.306h 56m 08.23
IY Canis Majoris862.87-32d 22` 16.706h 28m 39.24
Kappa Canis Majoris658.92-32d 30` 30.606h 49m 50.47
KM Canis Majoris1025.67-32d 52` 06.806h 31m 24.01
KX Canis Majoris911.07-26d 57` 26.906h 53m 00.31
Lambda Canis Majoris423.59-32d 34` 48.506h 28m 10.22
LS Canis Majoris1019.26-25d 12` 56.307h 01m 05.95
LZ Canis Majoris1842.73-25d 13` 51.807h 09m 43.03
Mirzam492.69-17d 57` 21.306h 22m 41.99
Mu Canis Majoris1244.90-14d 02` 36.406h 56m 06.65
Muliphein441.96-15d 37` 59.707h 03m 45.49
MZ Canis Majoris639.54-25d 53` 30.007h 21m 04.34
NO Canis Majoris1325.87-31d 55` 25.607h 23m 00.70
NR Canis Majoris301.17-17d 51` 53.507h 27m 07.99
Nu1 Canis Majoris350.71-18d 39` 35.806h 36m 22.86
Nu2 Canis Majoris64.42-19d 15` 20.606h 36m 41.00
Nu3 Canis Majoris421.40-18d 14` 14.806h 37m 53.43
Omega Canis Majoris911.07-26d 46` 21.707h 14m 48.66
Omicron Canis Majoris14825.61-24d 11` 03.206h 54m 07.95
Omicron2 Canis Majoris2764.10-23d 49` 59.907h 03m 01.47
OS Canis Majoris2234.00-16 d 14` 04.207h 09m 33.37
Pi Canis Majoris96.50-20d 08` 11.706h 55m 37.40
R Canis Majoris139.51-16d 23` 41.707h 19m 28.08
Sigma Canis Majoris1120.84-27d 56` 05.407h 01m 43.15
Sirius8.60-16d 42` 47.306h 45m 09.25
Sirius B-16 d 43` 0606h 45m 09.0
SW Canis Majoris2234.00-22d 26` 25.307h 08m 15.24
Tau Canis Majoris2992.32-24d 57` 15.807h 18m 42.49
Theta Canis Majoris260.72-12d 02` 18.906h 54m 11.48
UW Canis Majoris1907.39-24d 33` 31.307h 18m 40.38
V352 Canis Majoris54.54-23d 51` 43.906h 13m 45.33
V415 Canis Majoris1052.14-22d 36` 53.106h 36m 41.07
VY Canis Majoris-25d 46` 03.207h 22m 58.33
W Canis Majoris8363.16-11d 55` 23.807h 08m 03.44
Wezen1606.72-26d 23` 35.507h 08m 23.49
Xi1 Canis Majoris1382.05-23d 25` 06.406h 31m 51.37
Xi2 Canis Majoris441.36-22d 57` 53.406h 35m 03.38
Z Canis Majoris2630.35-11d 33` 06.207h 03m 43.17

Objects of Interest (Galaxies, Nebulas, Supernovas, etc) in Canis Major

NameTypeDistanceDeclinationRight Ascension
M41 Open ClusterOpen Cluster2.3-20:4406h 46m 0
NGC2207 Colliding GalaxiesColliding Galaxies81-21:22.2206h 16m 22s

Canis Major Constellation's Star Breakdown

Type Breakdown

BBlue-White 10,500 - 30,000k475
AWhite 7,500 - 10,000k267
KLight Orange Star 3,700 - 5,200k247
GYellow 5,200 - 6,000k135
FYellow-White 6,000 - 7,500k124
MRed Dwarf Star <3,700k41
OBlue Star >33,000k4

Size Breakdown

VMain Sequence500
IIINormal Giant416
IIBright Giant54
IbLess Luminous Supergiant18
IaLuminous Supergiant7
IabIntermediate Luminous Supergiant4
WWolf-Rayet Star2

Breakdown of Dwarf Stars by Type

sdsd Type SubDwarf Star1

Breakdown of Carbon Stars by Type

CC-Type Carbon Star4
NN-Type Carbon Star2
SS-Type Carbon Star1

Add a Comment

Email: (Optional)