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Last Updated: Monday, 4 February 2008, 14:49 GMT
Waterspout is captured on camera
The waterspout was seen near Aberystwyth marina

A waterspout has created a stir after being spotted off the coast of the Ceredigion town of Aberystwyth.

The weather phenomenon was caught on film and camera as it spun close to the shore, and was seen three miles away in Clarach Bay at about 1100 GMT.

But Dyfed-Powys Police said they had not received any reports of damage.

BBC Wales meteorologist Derek Brockway said they were fairly common and were formed by cool, unstable air moving over the warm sea.

A waterspout is a funnel-shaped cloud and differs from a tornado, which forms over land and is often more powerful.

Management consultant Andrew Button spotted it from his office at Aberystwyth marina, and took pictures and video footage on his mobile phone.

He said: "My colleagues and I looked up and saw it south of the marina.

"It came close to the shore, but I'm pretty sure it didn't come in land.

Thunder and lightning

"I commented at the time as we were looking out westwards, that the clouds were really, really dark, and how still the water was - a sort of calm before the storm.

Daniel Smart, who was visiting friends nearly three miles up the coast at Clarach Bay, said the waterspout seemed to be about 2m (6.5ft) wide.

"From my viewpoint, it looked like it was going inland towards Aberystwyth," he added.

"I could see it quite clearly and could see it touching the surface of the sea."

A spokesman for the Met Office said there were some heavy showers in the Aberystwyth area on Monday morning and some indication of lightning and thunder.

In November 2006, more than 20 houses were damaged when a tornado struck the village of Bow Street near Aberystwyth.

Amateur video footage of the waterspout

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