Cirrocumulus Floccus

What You Need to Know

Name(s): Cirrocumulus Floccus

Altitude of Formation: 4,80 – 12,000 m (16,000-40,000 ft)

Signals: Instability in the atmospheric level. Usually precedes bad weather clouds.

Meaning of the Name: The name comes from latin meaning ‘lock of wool’

Elaborated, More Comprehensive Information

Cirrocumulus floccus tends to invade a large expanse of sky. The cloud is usually made up of small, individual cloudlets which are ragged at their bases and round at their tops, as opposed to cirrocumulus castellanus cloudlets which have round bases. The floccus species can potentially develop into castellanus. When observed 30 degrees above the horizon, the widths of the cloudlets are less than one degree .

Occasionally cirrocumulus floccus is accompanied by the supplementary feature, virga, which is a form of precipitation which has evaporated before reaching ground-level, resulting in downward ice-crystal streaks.


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