About the Apus constellation: God has his way of communicating. In ancient times it was believed that these special arrangements of stars were created by God and each of them was symbols that held a unique meaning. That’s why constellations have always been associated with astronomy, one who could predict future.
Other than for religious reasons, constellations were also used in agriculture, about the time when there were no calendars and for navigation during a voyage. How do you think America was discovered?
Southern skies have a beautiful set of constellations that lights up the night sky and gives a visual treat for the stargazers. Among them, falls the Constellation Apus.
The ‘bird of Paradise’ hanging in emptiness stands out from all the other formations in the sky. It contributes to the glorious view of strategic arrangements of stars in the sky for people
who take out time from their busy lives just to sit back and watch the stars. Constellation Apus has been aptly called so as the formation represents a flying bird. Petrus Planicus, a Dutch-Flemish Astronomer first
illustrated the constellation in his celestial globe in the 16 the century.
The name ‘Apus’ comes from the Greek term ‘apous’ which means ‘without feet.’ You might be wondering, what’s the link between being a bird-of-paradise and without feet. For a long
time in history, it was believed that birds of paradise did not have any feet.
There’s one more interesting fact corresponding to it. The name, ‘Apus’ is a result of misspelling the word ‘Avis’ which means a bird. The constellation was originally named Avis
Indica rather than Apis Indica.
This made more sense. Hence some scientists and astronomers used to call it with its original name.
Apus constellation is formed out of 8 stars in total, among which four are more prominent than the rest. The four giant stars are Alpha Apodis, Gamma Apodis, Beta Apodis, and Delta Apodis.
They shine bright and mostly have a reddish tint in them.
The other not so significant stars are Kappa Apodis(divided into Kappa 1 and Kappa 2), Zeta Apodis, Eta Apodis, and Epsilon Apodis. Out of these, Alpha Apodis is the brightest one in the whole Apus constellation,
followed by Gamma Apodis and Beta Apodis in ascending order. Among them, the farthest one from earth is the Epsilon Apodis, which is nearly 551 light years away.
Location of Apus
Apus is located in the southern skies that are in the third quadrant covering an area of 206 Square degrees. It is visible under latitudes +5 Degrees and -90 Degrees. It is placed along
with other beautiful constellation namely, Pavo, Musca, Chamaeleon, Octans, Dorado, Grus, Phoenix, Tucana, Volans, Hydrus and Indus
All of them including Apus belong to the Johann Bayer family. To locate Apus, one needs to look to the Northeast side of Octave and try to find out the brightest star, Apus Alpha.
This was all about our fascinating Constellation Apus. So, the next time you look upon the clear sky, try to find the bird of paradise.