A Community Devoted to the Preservation and Practice of Celestial Navigation and Other Methods of Traditional Wayfinding
From: Robin Stuart
Date: 2021 Jan 2, 12:01 -0800
I wondered whether your question about β Hydri was a jolly new year jest. Its Hipparcos Catalog number is 2021! Assuming that's just a coincidence then the proper motion given in Stellarium of 2648 mas/year is quite a bit larger than the value of 2244 mas/year that you get from the Hipparcos Catalog https://hipparcos-tools.cosmos.esa.int/cgi-bin/HIPcatalogueSearch.pl?hipId=2021 Maybe they are using an outdated source.
I have never tried to "just look for" for σ Octantis. At magnitude 5.5 there doesn't seem to be much point. To find the South Celestial Pole I always used the trick of pointing one index finger at Achernar and the other at a point halfway between the inner pointer, β Centauri, and the Southern Cross. Bringing your hands together leaves you point at the pole. That has always been good enough,