Gallery: Rare ‘mother of pearl’ cloud lights up East Lothian skyline

Gallery: Rare ‘mother of pearl’ cloud lights up East Lothian skyline


A Narceous cloud is also known as the ‘mother of pearl’ and forms high in the atmosphere due to cold conditions.

Jonathan Head sent in these wonderful images of the ‘mother of pearl’ from Gullane this morning.

All images Jonathan Head

East Lothian Courier: The mother of pearl cloud in Gullane - Jonathan Head

Mother of pearl clouds often take the form of a thin disc shape, complemented with glowing colours which shimmer when the sun shines on them.

The term comes from the old English word for ‘Nacre’ which means ‘mother of pearl’.

The Met Office website adds: “The colours are reminiscent of the colours which reflect from a thin layer of oil on top of the water, an effect known as iridescence.”

East Lothian Courier: The mother of pearl cloud in Gullane - Jonathan Head

Nacreous clouds tend to form in very cold and dry weather conditions and are rarely spotted in the UK, but have been seen across Scotland today.

The Met Office added: “Due to their high altitude and the curvature of the Earth’s surface, these clouds are lit up by sunlight from below the horizon and reflect it to the ground, shining brightly well before dawn and after dusk.”

East Lothian Courier: The mother of pearl cloud in Gullane - Jonathan Head





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East Lothian Courier
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By
Gregor Millar

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