Click here for a higher-resolution image

This is the "head" and "beak" of the Pelican Nebula, a large nebula right next to the North America Nebula in Cygnus. I chose to orient it upside down (north at the bottom) because I thought this made a nicer composition, with the bright yellow ionization front pointing up rather than down. The orange and yellow areas consist of glowing hydrogen and sulphur gases while the blue regions are ionized oxygen. The two bright 5th-magnitude stars are 56 Cygni (the orange one) and 57 Cygni (the blue one).

This image contains several Herbig-Haro objects; these are labeled in the higher-resolution image (see link above). Herbig-Haro objects are created during the process of star formation, when jets of material are ejected from a forming star in the two directions perpendicular to its accretion disk. Besides the jets themselves, small patches of emission nebulosity may also result. In this image HH 563, 564, and 565 are examples of these small nebulas, while HH 555, located at the end of the prominent dark "elephant's trunk" to the lower left of image center, consists of just the two jets (pointing roughly in the 7 o'clock and 11 o'clock directions).