Dust devil hits downstate nursery, others seen throughout West Michigan


ROCKFORD, Mich. (WOOD) — There were multiple dust devils seen in West Michigan Thursday.

At Lincoln Nurseries on Lincoln Street near Walker, owners told News 8 a dust devil ripped coverings off their nursery.

Others were seen throughout West Michigan, including two in Rockford, as seen in videos sent by a News 8 viewer.

Dust devils are not tornadoes.

They form on warm, clear days. The sun heats the ground, and as the dried dirt heats up it heats the air above it, causing the air to rise up. Circulation then starts in that column of rising air. That picks up dust and debris, which is what is seen as a dust devil.

The dust devil typically lasts less than a minute, as the cooler inflow air eventually cuts off the circulation.

Dust devils typically form on calm, clear and warm days. West Michigan has seen a few dust devils lately as conditions have been favorable.

As seen at Lincoln Nurseries, they are able to cause damage, and can be anywhere from 10 to 100 feet wide. 

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