High winds and large waves in the ocean are known to create aerosolized droplets that contain cyanobacteria. Scientists are not sure if cyanobacteria cells can become airborne on Vermont lakes, which have calmer conditions than the ocean.
Some activities — such as water skiing — may create droplets of water that can be breathed in. Those droplets could contain cyanobacteria cells during a cyanobacteria bloom. If aerosolized droplets are formed, it is not known how far the droplets carrying cyanobacteria cells could travel in the air. This would depend on the size, shape, density and other physical properties of the cyanobacteria cells.
Microcystins, the most commonly found cyanotoxins in the U.S., are large molecules that are not volatile, meaning they would not evaporate into the air from the water. Therefore, these molecules would only be breathed in if water droplets containing the toxin are created through wind, waves, boat motors, etc.
It is unknown whether anatoxin-a and cylindrospermopsin, which are other types of cyanotoxins, can volatilize from water.