Algae blooms are common in Central New York during the late summer months . Hobart and William Smith research student Joshua Andrews says it is vital to find ways to detect the algae blooms so people do not get sick when they swim in a lake.
A new tactic to tracking these blooms is using a multispectral drone that can see beyond a normal light spectrum. The drones can detect color patterns of algae in the water.
The causes for the blooms are different depending on each lake. The worst algae blooms look like pea soup.
Andrews correlates the images taken from the drone with the data researchers are collecting at the water.
Algae blooms are appearing in lakes that they have never been seen in before. For example, Skaneateles Lake. Andrews says this could be because of nutrients coming into the water from runoffs.
Honeoye Lake is shallow and researchers believe that is why the lake has more frequent algae blooms. It is important to avoid going into the lake if there are any signs of algae.