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VIDEO: Waterspout forms off NSW coast

Monday 19 Nov 2012 2:58 p.m.

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By 3 News online staff

A huge waterspout has been filmed off Batemans Bay in New South Wales, Australia.

The waterspout developed on Sunday afternoon, the Sydney Morning Herald reports.

Thunderstorms, heavy rain and winds of up to 100km/h have lashed the region in recent days. Over 24,000 lightning strikes were recorded in the state over the weekend.

Waterspouts only form in certain conditions but are also unpredictable, according to a senior meteorologist at Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology, Peter Zmijewski.

''They are impossible to forecast,'' he told the paper. Zmijewski says waterspouts can be formed by ‘wind shear’ – differences in wind speed or direction over short distances – when the water is warmer than the air and the air is unstable. Contrary to appearances, he says they do not suck up water.

Watch the video to see the waterspout in action.

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