November 30, 2023


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House station photographs reveal Earth’s “bloody” lakes

3 min read
Laguna Colorada

Astronauts captured a “bloody” phenomenon happening in some Earth’s lakes whereas they had been on board the Worldwide House Station.

They took photos exhibiting our bodies of water flowing in crimson colours as a result of abundance of algae and micro organism current within the water.

One picture posted on NASA’s Earth Observatory reveals Laguna Colorada, also referred to as the Purple Lake within the Bolivian Andes, from above. This lake is known for its vivid crimson look, and in response to native folklore, the lake just isn’t full of water in any respect, however with the blood of the gods.

Reddish hues are attribute of hypersaline environments, the place our bodies of water are sometimes saltier than common seawater. In these lakes, crimson algae and different microorganisms are so considerable that they vibrantly coloration the water.

Laguna Colorada
Laguna Colorada, or Purple Lake, in Bolivia as seen from house. The lake’s coloration is vibrant crimson as a consequence of algae and different microorganisms.
SS Crew Earth Statement Facility and Earth Sciences and Distant Sensing Unit, Johnson House Heart./NASA Earth Observatory

Some lakes expertise extra algae progress than others. Its progress is dependent upon a number of elements, together with water temperature, mild, and water salinity. The algae present in Laguna Colorado are an important meals supply for flamingos, which come to the water to feed.

One other picture taken by astronauts reveals the Betsibuka River delta in Madagascar, revealing crimson and brown water flows.

Betsibuka River Delta
The Betsibuka River Delta in Madagascar as seen from house. Purple water bleeds into the ocean.
SS Crew Earth Statement Facility and Earth Sciences and Distant Sensing Unit, Johnson House Heart./NASA Earth Observatory

NASA’s Earth Observatory reported that the redness of this river and different waters in Madagascar is brought on by iron-rich deposits.

Many photographs of those bloody waterways have been captured earlier than by satellites and astronauts. Based on a earlier report from NASA’s Earth Observatory, one of many astronauts mentioned when assembly with the President of Madagascar: “Oh, sure, I do know your nation. It’s the nation that’s bleeding into the ocean.”

Sediment flows via the river and generally clogs the waterways. Nevertheless, in addition they generally kind new islands, the place mangroves develop.

Whereas the bloody coloration could appear unusual, some algae present very important water assets for chook species and marine life.

Within the Betsibuka River Delta, estuary seagrasses present meals for endangered inexperienced turtles and dugongs.

An extreme quantity of algae within the water could be dangerous. Purple tide, for instance, is a kind of algae that grows rapidly and might coloration the water vivid crimson. Excessive concentrations of those algae could be poisonous to marine life. Warming waters, affected by local weather change, may cause giant quantities of crimson tide in lakes and rivers.

The Nice Salt Lake in Utah has additionally seen a considerable amount of crimson algae blooms in its waters previously.

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