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Colourful and wispy Sharpless 2-296 forms the “wings” of an area of sky known as the Seagull Nebula — named for its resemblance to a gull in flight. This celestial bird contains a fascinating mix of intriguing astronomical objects. Glowing clouds weave amid dark dust lanes and bright stars. The Seagull Nebula is the hot and energetic birthplace of new stars.

Credit: ESO/VPHAS+ team/N.J. Wright (Keele University)

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