Mammatus Above Perth

January 20, 2005

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Referred by: Ben Eenhoorn
Summary authors & editors: Ben Eenhoorn; Jim Foster

These heavy hanging clouds appear to be fingers from above, ready to snatch the unwary from the face of the Earth. This impressive photo of mammatus clouds was taken in the late afternoon (18:57 local time) near Perth, Western Australia on December 27, 2004. On this day, thunderstorm activity brought hail and high winds to the Perth area. Though not necessarily associated with severe weather, most people head for cover when they're observed. Cold down-drafts within mature thunderstorm cells are responsible for these ominous looking protrusions. See also the Earth Science Picture of the Day for September 8, 2004.

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