Can you identify these weather phenomena?

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Do you know a tornado when you see it? Can you identify the different types of clouds? Put your weather knowledge to the test with this photo-based quiz.

Question 1 of 15

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Wikimedia Commons
What atmospheric illusion is shown in this photograph?

Supernumerary rainbows occur when rainbows "echo" within the inner ring of a primary rainbow. They are extremely rare to see, but quite beautiful! 

Question 2 of 15

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Raquel Yumi Shida/NASA
This rainbow that can only be seen from above is called what?

This glory was photographed from a plane flying over South Africa.

Question 3 of 15

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John Kerstholt/Wikimedia Commons
What is this type of cloud called?

Shelf clouds are a type of arcus cloud that stretches ahead of a storm but still remains attached to its parent storm.

Question 4 of 15

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What weather phenomenon is pictured here?

This roll cloud separated from its storm and was found over Uruguay's Las Olas beach. 

Question 5 of 15

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David McNew/Getty Images
This rare, fierce weather event is called all of these names EXCEPT:

Fire whirls are created when fire and tornadoes mix, but they can also occur when heat is suddenly concentrated in a small area.

Question 6 of 15

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NASA
What is this strange lightning called?

Red sprites pop up as far as 60 miles above a storm cloud! Lasting only a few seconds, they are similar to cone-shaped blue jets.

Question 7 of 15

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ZUMA Press
What is pictured here?

Waterspouts are essentially tornadoes that happen over water. While they don't suck up water, they do make odd sounds, making them convenient for sea monster sightings.

Question 8 of 15

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NASA image by Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Rapid Response Team, Goddard Space Flight Center
This is a satellite view of what weather phenomenon?

The image here shows parts of China, North and South Korea that were hit with several inches of snow in January 2010.

Question 9 of 15

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What rare sight is featured in this photo?

Photographer Maciej Winiarczyk captured this rare occurrence of noctilucent (or night-shining) clouds among the northern lights in Scotland.

Question 10 of 15

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Wikimedia Commons
What weather phenomenon is pictured here?

Lenticular clouds may look like Unidentified Flying Objects, but really these clouds are just condensed into a lens shape by the moist air on the downwind side of mountains.

Question 11 of 15

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NASA
This satellite image shows:

Wave clouds are created by internal waves in the atmosphere, usually near mountains.

Question 12 of 15

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Wikimedia Commons
What kind of cloud is pictured here?

Often associated with severe weather, cumulonimbus clouds have dark bases and stretch far taller than other types of clouds.

Question 13 of 15

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Wikimedia Commons
What is pictured here?

Fallstreak holes, also called hole punch clouds and skypunches, form in cirrocumulus and altocumulus clouds when water particles haven't frozen yet. Fallstreak holes are another atmospheric phenomenon that can be confused with UFOs.

Question 14 of 15

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Wikimedia Commons
What is shown in this picture?

This is a photograph from the 2004 tsunami in Thailand. Tsunamis differ from tidal waves because they are unrelated to the ocean's tides. They aren't caused by the forces of the moon, but rather by disturbances like earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and landslides.

Question 15 of 15

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What is shown in this photograph?

When funnel clouds touch the ground, they become tornadoes. The funnel cloud in this picture eventually became a category EF5 tornado in the rural outskirts of Winnipeg in Canada.

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