What is seeder - feeder snow?


By KMVT News


I figured I'd do a quick blog update to explain what seeder - feeder snow is before we potentially start tossing the phrase around again. I'll try to explain this as simply as possible because it is a bit technical.. 


First it is important to mention that snow forms when liquid freezes around a "nucleus." A nucleus can be things like clays or dust that is up in the atmosphere. Ice crystals can also act as a nucleus.


Ok, so haivng said that back to seeder - feeder snow formation:


When warmer air is forced to rise over cooler air (an inversion) thick layers of stratus clouds form. Sometimes there are clouds ABOVE that layer of stratus (seeder clouds) that produce small crystals. When those ice crystals fall through the lower level of moist stratus clouds (feeder clouds) the crystals act as a nuclei for liquid to freeze on and snow begins forming and falling out of the lower status clouds. Here is a graphic that visually explains the process:



Usually seeder - feeder snow falls out of the lower levels of the atmosphere so sometimes radar will not pick it up. 


We saw this phenomina earlier this month and I heard someone refer to it as snow globe snow because it was lightly falling and swirling around.


I hope this helped you understand seeder - feeder snow a LITTLE bit better. If you still have questions feel free to email me! nickkosir@neuhoffmedia.com


Meteorologist, Nick Kosir




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