Which galaxy is pictured below?
The Tadpole Galaxy is a disrupted barred spiral galaxy located 420 million light-years from Earth in the northern constellation Draco. Its most dramatic feature is a massive trail of stars about 280,000 light-years long; the size of the galaxy has been attributed to a merger with a smaller galaxy that is believed to have occurred about 100 million years ago. The galaxy is filled with bright blue star clusters.
It is hypothesized that a more compact intruder galaxy crossed in front of the Tadpole Galaxy—from left to right from the perspective of Earth—and was slung around behind the Tadpole by their mutual gravitational attraction. During this close encounter, tidal forces drew out the spiral galaxy's stars, gas, and dust, forming the conspicuous tail. The intruder galaxy itself, estimated to lie about 300 thousand light-years behind the Tadpole, can be seen through foreground spiral arms at the upper left. Following its terrestrial namesake, the Tadpole Galaxy will likely lose its tail as it grows older, the tail's star clusters forming smaller satellites of the large spiral galaxy.