Mediocris Cloud Species: Tall As It Is Wide

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Definition: A species of cumulus cloud of mediocre and modest height

Description & Characteristics. Translated from latin meaning moderate, the ‘mediocris’ cloud species is found only in the cumulus cloud type. No other cloud type besides a cumulus cloud can be classified as mediocris. A cumulus mediocris cloud formation is fairly distinct and easy to classify in relation to other clouds: they’re a cumulus cloud that’s wide as it’s tall. They’re halfway between cumulus humilis (wider than it is tall) and cumulus congestus (taller than it is wide). The proper cloud classification abbreviation for this cloud is ‘Cu med’.

The mediocris species of cloud is common in fair weather. They can however their vertical development and turn into a cumulus congestus cloud very quickly in unstable weather. It’s not unusual to see the cloud variety radiatus (parallel bands and strips) show itself in this cloud species. If you spot a sky full of cumulus cloud streets that contain clouds as tall as they’re wide, you might classify the clouds as cumulus mediocris radiatus.

Because cumulus mediocris are a bit more vertically developed than typical cumulus clouds, it’s possible to see them accompanied by rain (praecipitatio cloud feature), evaporating rain strips (virga cloud feature), and even a cap cloud formation (pileus cloud accessory).

Cumulus mediocris (Cu med)
Cumulus mediocris (Cu med)
Cumulus mediocris (Cu med)
A photograph of cumulus mediocris clouds (Cu med) over a golf course in Florida

Mediocris Cloud Types

The mediocris cloud species is only associated with the cumulus cloud type.

A graphical illustration of a cumulus mediocris cloud

Cumulus (Cu)

Low, puffy, fair-weather