The constellation Leo (the Lion) culminates at midnight on the 1st of the month. One of the few constellations to resemble the object or creature it’s meant to represent, it’s easily distinguished by the “backwards question-mark” asterism that forms the lions’ head. Regulus, its brightest star, lies almost on the ecliptic (the pale blue line in the images above) and, therefore, the Moon and planets pass very close by on a regular basis. For telescopic observers, the constellation is also home to a large number of galaxies.
Observers in the northern hemisphere have the help of the Big Dipper (aka the Plough, for those in the United Kingdom), part of the Ursa Major constellation, to help find Leo. Alternatively, look for the Moon and Jupiter and draw a line down as the pair are also pointing toward the constellation. A map of Leo can be found on the post for February 18th.
(Click on an image to enlarge.)
Images courtesy of Mobile Observatory.
The constellation Leo culminates at midnight tonight. (All night. See image above.)
The spiral galaxy M96 culminates at midnight tonight. (Magnitude 10.1. Leo, all night)
The elliptical galaxy M105 culminates at midnight tonight. (Magnitude 10.2. Leo, all night.)
Learn more about every upcoming astronomical event in 2015 An Astronomical Year (Kindle eBook) and The Astronomical Almanac (2015-2019) (Kindle eBook) and The Astronomical Almanac (2015-2019) (Paperback Edition).
The Amateur Astronomer’s Notebook allows astronomers to log 150 observing sessions and includes an appendix of hundreds of suggested deep sky objects.