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Pisces, The Fishes Constellation

Pisces Constellation Star Map

Pisces (Pronounciation:Pye-seas, Abbrev:Psc, Latin:Piscium) is a constellation, one of 88 constellations that the night sky is divided into. The sky is not divided up equally between the constellations. Pisces takes up 889.417 sq. degrees of the night sky which equates to 2.16% of the night sky. Pisces is the 14th largest in terms of size in the night sky.

The constellation name means The Fishes . 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.

There are 21 stars that make up the main constellation. The hipparcos satellite scanned and detailed 1953 stars. There are 79 stars that can be seen with the naked eye in the constellation on a very clear night sky.

Pisces is a member constellation of the Zodiac grouping, a group of 12 star signs that astrologers use to predict someones future based on their date of birth and which constellation appeared when the Sun set. The Zodiac year may be divided up equally between the twelve signs but when they appear in the night sky no longer conforms to the Zodiac calendar. Pisces is an equatorial constellation that can be seen by countries nearest the Equator.

The distance to Pisces is not calculable because all the stars that make up the constellation are at various distances. The best answer for distance to Pisces is to calculate the average distance of the stars.

There are 33 Extrasolar Planets (Exoplanets) in this constellation that are detailed on this site. There is a dedicated page for exoplanets in Pisces.

There are 1 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.

Pisces 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 5218, Pisces's Furthest Star

The furthest star that is located in the constellation is HIP 5218 and it is 81540.84 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.

Kullat Nunu, Brightest Star in Pisces

The brightest star in Pisces is Kullat Nunu and is located about 30.43 light years from the Sun. The star has a apparent magnitude of 3.62 but an absolute magnitude of -1.53 when the star is viewed from a distance of 10 Parsecs or 32.6 Light Years. The star is only recognised as being Eta Piscium rather than having Alpha status.

60 Piscium, Pisces's Dimmest Visible Star

The dimmest star that can be seen in Pisces with the naked eye is 60 Piscium. The dim star has an apparent magnitude of 5.98. 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.

BP Piscium

The star has been observed as being a cannibal star, a star that has consumed another star. BP Piscium has burped so to speak and created an accretion disk round itself and streams at the poles. Most vampire stars usually consume their victims over time but this would seem to have gobbled it up.

Van Maanen's Star

Van Maanen's star is a small white dwarf and is the third closest dwarf star after Sirius B and Procyon B white dwarves. It is on its own compared to the other two that are closer. It is named after Adriaan van Maanen, a Dutch-American astronomer who discovered it whilst researching a Lalande 1299. It is also the nearest star of any type in the constellation to us.

When Pisces is Visible in the Night Sky

For Northern Hemisphere, I am assuming you are viewing from London, Great Britain and for the southern hemisphere, I am assuming you are in Sydney, Australia. If you are in a different location to either of these, you will need to adjust accordingly.

Pisces is a Zodiac sign for mainly March but it is not the best time of the year to see it. Since the time of when the Zodiac was drawn up, the constellations have moved out of position.

Northern Hemisphere

The best time to view the constellation would be any time in October/November when it will be dark early and you will be able to see it about 9pm in the evening when it is dark. Pisces will be visible as early as July but the problem is that it will only be visible in the morning when the Sun is out. It can also be viewed in August but the problem with that is you would need to be up at about 1 o'clock in the morning to be able to see it. The constellation will be on the horizon in the east. If you can wait another month, the constellation will be higher in the sky later in the month and into November. On the 1st of November, the constellation will be in a more south-easterly direction. The constellation will not be getting any higher and instead start to make its move downwards out of view.

Southern Hemisphere

Pisces can be seen from 9pm in October, the same time as in the Northern Hemisphere. It can be seen earlier but you'd have to stay up longer and into the early morning to see it. You will be able to fully view the constellation from about North-East to East direction just above the horizon. If you can wait until December, it will be higher in the sky at around 9pm. It will also be viewing in January the following year. Those closer to the equator such as Darwin will be able to see the constellation higher in the sky.

Pisces Mythology

Aphrodite and her son Eros were transformed into fish to escape the monster Typhon by river nymphs. To show a sign of her gratitude, fishes were transposed into the sky. The fishes are shown tied together to indicate that they don't lose one another.

Meteor Showers Radiating from Pisces

There are 20 Meteor Showers that occur during the year within this constellation based on information gathered from Adam Mickiewicz University (Poland). The list below are major ones and which I have a date period for.

NameActivityPeak ActivityClosest Star
Daytime April Piscids16th April  
April PiscidsApril 8-29Apr. 20/21  
Delta PiscidsJun 20-26Jun 23Linteum
omega Piscids17th September  
Southern delta Piscids19th September  
gamma Piscids13th October  

List of Main Stars in Pisces

The following list contains the stars that make up the constellation. For a larger list of stars in the entire constellation area, please visit the For a list of named stars, that is stars that don't start HD or HIP, please visit Pisces Star List page.

NameBayerDistance (Lt.Yr.)Right AscensionDeclinationSpectral TypeColour
AlreschaAlpha Piscium150.5802h 02m 02.80+02d 45` 49.5A2White
Fum al SamakahBeta Piscium408.2123h 03m 52.61+03d 49` 12.3B6VeBlue/White
Gamma PisciumGamma Piscium137.9723h 17m 09.49+03d 16` 56.1G7IIIYellow
LinteumDelta Piscium311.2200h 48m 40.90+07d 35` 06.7K5IIIOrange
KahtEpsilon Piscium181.8101h 02m 56.66+07d 53` 24.3K0IIIOrange
RevatiZeta Piscium173.8601h 13m 43.80+07d 34` 31.8A7IVWhite
Zeta Piscium BZeta Piscium B306.5401h 13m 45.17+07d 34` 42.2F7VYellow/White
Kullat NunuEta Piscium349.5901h 31m 28.99+15d 20` 45.0G8IIIYellow
Theta PisciumTheta Piscium148.5323h 27m 58.17+06d 22` 44.8K1IIIOrange
Iota PisciumIota Piscium44.7323h 39m 56.82+05d 37` 38.5F7VYellow/White
Kappa PisciumKappa Piscium153.4923h 26m 55.91+01d 15` 21.0A0pWhite
Lambda PisciumLambda Piscium106.6223h 42m 02.88+01d 46` 49.5A7VWhite
Mu PisciumMu Piscium303.9701h 30m 10.94+06d 08` 38.2K4IIIOrange
Nu PisciumNu Piscium363.2101h 41m 25.91+05d 29` 15.4K3IIIOrange
TorcularOmicron Piscium279.4901h 45m 23.59+09d 09` 27.5K0IIIOrange
Tau PisciumTau Piscium168.8201h 11m 39.59+30d 05` 23.0K0III-IV...Orange
Upsilon PisciumUpsilon Piscium307.9901h 19m 27.98+27d 15` 50.7A3VWhite
Psi1 PisciumPsi1 Piscium275.0101h 05m 40.93+21d 28` 23.6A1VnWhite
Psi1 Piscium BPsi1 Piscium B280.2101h 05m 41.68+21d 27` 55.7A0VnWhite
Omega PisciumOmega Piscium104.3423h 59m 18.60+06d 51` 48.9F4IVYellow/White
4 Ceti598.4600h 07m 44.10-02d 32` 55.3B8IIIsp...Blue/White

Pisces Facts


NamePisces
AbbreviationPsc
Is a Zodiac Sign Yes
Brightest StarKullat Nunu
Area889.417 sq. deg.
Percentage of Night Sky2.16%
Size Position14th
Hemisphere Equatorial
Site Exoplanet Count33
Meteor Shower Count20
Nearest StarVan Maanen's Star
Nearest Star with Exoplanet(s)HD 217107
Brightest StarKullat Nunu
Dimmest Star60 Piscium
Furthest StarHIP 5218
Bright Star Count79
Hipparcos Star Count1953
Main Star Count21
Messier Deep Space Object Count1
Bordering / Neighbouring / Surrounding ConstellationsAndromeda
Pegasus
Aquarius
Cetus
Aries
Triangulum

*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 Pisces


NameTypeDistanceDeclinationRight Ascension
Messier 74 (NGC628)Spiral Galaxy24,000-36,000 kly+15:4701h 36m 7
NGC 520Anniversary Galaxy100 Million Ly03:47:45.6001h 24h 35m 19
NGC 524Lenticular Galaxy90 Million Ly09:32:23.3301h 24h 47m 56


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