The Emu's Head in Aboriginal Astronomy

 Download Full Resolution (2048x1370) 2471KB 5,637

'The Emu's Head in Aboriginal Astronomy'

The Emu's Head in Aboriginal Astronomy

[Public Domain] 10 May 2016 Dylan O'Donnell
CATEGORY : Astrophotography
5,638 others viewed this post.

This is colloquially known as the “Coalsack” as it looks a bit like a black bag. To the indigenous people of Australia however, it was the head of the Emu looking downwards towards the land. An ancient rock engraving of this nebula exists in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, and when the seasonal rotation of the nebula matched the orientation of the carved emu – it was the autumnal signal for Australian aboriginals to collect and harvest the eggs of emus to feast on.

Sadly, it is now impossible to take a photo of the night sky and the engraving together as the light pollution from modern humanity in Sydney has erased the emu from the sky. That is a fitting irony probably with more than a few parallels to think about. Coalsack indeed.

This widefield image is taken with a 135mm DSLR, no telescope. I’ve included below the Great Carina and Dark Doodad Nebulas taken with the same camera and scale. The are both in close in proximity to this one, and a contextual scale image of the Milky Way view to show you just how large the Emu’s Head / Coalsack appears in the sky.

coalsack-context_02

CARINA-WIDE2

DOODAD-STACKED-PROCESSED2

 Download Full Resolution (2048x1370) 2471KB


EQUIPMENT DYLAN USED
Here is some of the gear this photo was made with. Click for info

More Astrophotography ...

Going Deep on Thackeray's Globules
Astrophotography
NGC 3324, The Nebula with a Face
Astrophotography
NGC 3576 The Statue of Liberty Nebula
Astrophotography
Keyhole Nebula Near Eta Carina
Astrophotography
IC2944 - The Dragon Nebula ... and other news.
Astrophotography
Geostationary Satellites (Animated)
Astrophotography
The Flame Nebula
Astrophotography
Heaven`s Gate & The Pink Panther
Astrophotography
Dragon's Head Nebula NGC2035
Astrophotography
The Rosette Nebula (Caldwell 49/50)
Astrophotography
Horsehead Nebula up Close
Astrophotography
The Clouds of Orion
Astrophotography
The Horsehead Swims in Hydrogen
Astrophotography
M45, The Pleiades (Seven Sisters)
Astrophotography
Luminous Supermoon Corona in Full Colour
Astrophotography
M31 Andromeda, King of the Visual Galaxies
Astrophotography
Looking Directly at the Sun.
Astrophotography
Sculptor Galaxy up Close
Astrophotography
Collaborating on a Photo - M20 Trifid
Astrophotography
Double Iridium Flare - Satellites catching a Sunbeam
Astrophotography
M16 Eagle Nebula. Widefield and Narrowbands!
Astrophotography
M8 Lagoon Nebula (with new camera!)
Astrophotography
My Astro Selfie (And I was on TV!)
Astrophotography, Notable
Lagoon M8 Up Close ...
Astrophotography
Astrophotography Archives ...