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Moon and faint Cancer on March 26

Tonight – March 26, 2018 – the bright waxing gibbous moon shines in front of Cancer the Crab, the faintest constellation of the zodiac. Although the moon pinpoints Cancer’s place in the sky on this night, the moonlit glare will make Cancer tough to see.

However, you shouldn’t have much trouble spotting some bright stars on either side of Cancer, along the zodiac. The Gemini stars, Castor and Pollux, lie to the west of tonight’s moon whereas the star Regulus, the brightest in the constellation Leo the Lion, shines to the east of tonight’s moon.

As the Earth spins beneath the heavens throughout the night, going from west to east, the moon, Cancer, the Gemini stars and Regulus will appear to move westward across the sky.

The moon will set in the west in the wee hours before sunrise March 27.

Look for the Beehive in between the Gemini stars Castor and Pollux and the star Regulus in Leo.

There’s a faint star cluster in Cancer, called the Beehive. In a dark sky, once the moon moves away, you can glimpse it with the eye alone.

View larger. | Victor C. Rogus in Arcadia, Florida said his skies were “quite hazy” when he used his telescope to catch the Beehive star cluster near the moon on the night of March 26, 2018. Vixen “Star Guy” 66mm x400mm F6 APO ED refractor, Cannon 80d camera, Losmandy GM8 mount.

Bottom line: The bright waxing gibbous moon shines in front of Cancer the Crab, the faintest constellation of the zodiac, on March 26, 2018.

Bruce McClure

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