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WeatherTalk: Scud clouds can be mistaken for funnels

Their technical name is Stratus Fractus

Scud
Scud cloud underneath a thunderstorm
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FARGO — Sometimes you may notice little, somewhat disorganized gray clouds underneath the main cloud of a thunderstorm. The technical name for these clouds is stratus fractus, but most meteorologists call them "scud." A scud cloud forms when the air beneath the cloud has become saturated, causing these little cloud pieces to form underneath the base.

Because these clouds are very low to the ground, they are pushed around by the winds of the thunderstorm, causing them to move up and down and sideways, sometimes giving the appearance of a vague rotation. Because of this, scud clouds are sometimes mistaken as funnel clouds, but they are really just an indicator that rain is very near by.

Related Topics: WEATHER
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