Clouds of Southern Africa's skys

Moderator: Crested Val

User avatar
Batmad
Virtual Ranger
Virtual Ranger
Posts: 2479
Joined: Sat Mar 29, 2008 7:05 pm
Location: Wherever the birds take me..

Clouds of Southern Africa's skys

Unread post by Batmad »

Now that i am learning about clouds in Geography and on my FGASA course it is starting up an interest in my head.....

First of all the different types of clouds here in SA

1- Cirrocumulus (High cloud)
2- Cirrus (High cloud)
3- Cirrostratus (High Cloud)
4- Altocumulus (Middle cloud)
5- Altostratus (Middle cloud)
6- Nimbostratus (Low cloud)
7- Stratocumulus (Low cloud)
8- Stratus (Low cloud)
9- Cumulus (Vertical development)
10- Cumulonimbus (Thunderstorm)

*The above info is taken from the FGASA level 1 learner's manual*

Cirrocumulas-

These clouds are small'ish and are genrally grouped or in lines.

Cirrus-

This cloud is a feather like cloud which is one of the highest along with the other cirrus type clouds.
This cloud generally occurs at 6000-12000m.
The edge of the cloud normally curls in a feather like fashion.

Cirrostratus-

This cloud is also found at the above height and is more of a layer of a cloud.
When this formation occurs it normally shows that a warm front is on its way.
It also normally gives the sun and moon a halo effect.
This is a spectacular thing to witness!
A large ring forms around the moon or sun.
I have personally seen the moon halo twice and it is marvelous!


I shall do Altocumulus, Altostratus and Nimbostratus soon...
Tour Leader for Birding Ecotours | Aspiring Conservationist | Birdventurer
User avatar
Batmad
Virtual Ranger
Virtual Ranger
Posts: 2479
Joined: Sat Mar 29, 2008 7:05 pm
Location: Wherever the birds take me..

Re: Clouds of Southern Africa's skys

Unread post by Batmad »

Like i said above the Cirrostratus cloud is magnificent to witness!
Keep an eye out for it if you in the southern hemisphere when you go out into your garden at night......Have a look at the moon and you might be able to see it. 8)
Tour Leader for Birding Ecotours | Aspiring Conservationist | Birdventurer
Nannie
Posts: 165
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2005 11:03 am
Location: Marloth,is where i want to be.

Re: Clouds of Southern Africa's skys

Unread post by Nannie »

Found it, it's called "cloud iridescence" or irisation and is a diffraction phenomenon.
It is normally caused by small water droplets or ice crystals of similar size within a cloud.
The cloud must be optically thin so that most rays encounter only a single droplet.
Newly forming clouds produce the brightest and most colourful iridescence because their droplets are all of the same size.
This also normally occurs at between 6 to 13 degrees from the sun.
User avatar
umtali1
Legendary Virtual Ranger
Legendary Virtual Ranger
Posts: 10279
Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2011 1:34 pm
Location: Comberton, Cambridge UK ...rejoicing at the beauty of planet Earth.

Re: Clouds of Southern Africa's skys

Unread post by umtali1 »

We saw this phenomenon while in the north of the Kruger this May. It was early morning. I think it's called noctilucent

Image.
umtali1

Marakele - August 2017
https://www.sanparks.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=27&t=101340

2016 Reis Verhaal from Kruger 'Bush' Camps
2013 Mokala and KNP,
2015 "Cape Town to Namibia border"
Post Reply