A number of people in Cape Town, South Africa, reported seeing odd-shaped clouds in the sky. Some claimed they were “UFOs” or at least “UFO”-shaped clouds.
However, there’s an easy explanation. ABC meteorologist Daniel Peck said the clouds are lenticular clouds.
“They are pretty common and pretty cool to look at,” Peck said. “Lenticular clouds are usually associated with mountain ranges,” he added. “The air is flowing, hits the mountains, rises and the cloud forms once you get past the mountain’s peak.”
The clouds are unique and similar ones were reported in Texas earlier in 2015.
According to EarthSky, the clouds are named due to the lens-like shape they create. They’re usually formed by air flowing over mountains.
The website says: “When this happens, a series of large-scale standing waves may form on the mountain’s downwind side. If the temperature at the crest of the wave drops to the dew point, moisture in the air may condense to form lenticular clouds. As the moist air moves back down into the trough of the wave, the cloud may evaporate back into vapor. So lenticular can appear and disappear relatively quickly.”