How to Spot a Drone At Night

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How to Spot a Drone At Night


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As technology emerges and its price becomes more affordable, there is no doubt that high-quality drones can now be easily used to spy on someone.

A drone camera can be used to take photos from a distance, without you even realizing it! This is especially true when drones are flown at night when they are difficult to be seen.

Sounds scary right? Luckily, there are ways to know whether a drone is flying nearby!

So, if you are feeling worried about someone invading your security and privacy, it is best to protect yourself against these spy drones!

If you are interested to know more about it, keep reading as we provide you some tips and methods on how to spot a drone at night, and help you be more worry-free! 

Ways on How to Spot a Drone at Night

There are several ways on how to detect drones at night. One is by using your senses, keeping your eyes and ears focused on drone lights and sounds it emits.

Another is through the use of a gadget or technology. Motion detection cameras, drone detection apps, microwave motion sensors, and radar detection systems are some tools needed to spot an intruding drone when dark. 

Without the use of technology 

1. Look for Flashing Lights

If you feel like you spotted a light blink near you, be sure to investigate further as most drones radiate lights when flying. 

They are usually classified into 2 types, the navigation light, and the Anti-collision lights.

Navigation Lights

These lights are also known as native light systems. They do not flicker and have solid colored light that is used to navigate the drone and help determine its location by the drone operator.

The most common colors of lights used are white, green, or red but they are not limited to these alone as they can use multiple colors simultaneously. 

Anti Collision Lights 

The Federal Aviation Administration usually requires anti-collision lights to be installed for people who intend to use their drones between the morning civil twilight and evening civil twilight. 

The FAA defines Evening Civil Twilight as the interval that occurs between thirty minutes and an hour after sunset. Morning Civil Twilight begins one hour before sunrise and ends 30 minutes before sunrise. 

These types of lights are much easier to spot due to their blinking lights, they usually come in a variety of colors (usually red and white) and different strobing effects like slow strobe, constant light, or fast strobe. 

2. Listen to the Sounds Well

Newer versions of drones are relatively quieter than the older ones, but even the quietest drone still produces whirring noises coming from its propellers. 

It is important to pay attention to the sound and your environment to help detect any spying drones around! 

Spotting a Drone at Night Using a Gadget


1. Use Microwave Motion Sensors 

The use of microwave motion sensors is a cheaper way to detect flying drones close by.

It is best placed in a window or glass panel, when a drone enters its Field of View (FOV), the microwave sensors determine the speed and direction of motion after a signal has been detected, allowing you to spot a drone. 

2. Use Radar Detectors 

Radar detectors are one of the most expensive but the most reliable methods of spotting a drone at night. It can even monitor not just one area but a whole property! 

It determines the presence of a drone through its motion detection abilities, analyzing the radio waves it catches from the sky coming from any intruding drones around.

Many security companies have produced high-end radar technology drone detection systems. These are usually used by the sensitive property, it does not only detect incoming drones but can also determine its specific model and type.

3. Use a Drone Detector Application

Almost every one of us probably owns a smartphone camera! What’s great about these devices is that they allow you to easily access various useful applications. 

And if you want to detect drones, you can simply install and choose one from various drone detector apps available, which’s free of charge! 

Usually, drones communicate with their owner by using unencrypted wifi signals. What this drone detectors app does is capture these unencrypted wi-fi signals. Once the signal has been taken, it will compare it with a database to determine the location of the pilot. 

However, these apps can only detect drones that are less than half a mile away from you, and can’t detect encrypted communication.

4. Use Night Vision Cameras with Motion Detection 

Most home security cameras feature night vision, it is best to pair this up along with motion detection cameras. 

As mentioned earlier, drones emit lights. If a spy drone is just around somewhere, its lights and the drone’s movement will activate your motion detection camera and will allow you to easily spot a drone by receiving notifications on your phone. 

It is important to place this camera in a high location for a wider scope view. 

SeeVision Wireless Rechargeable Battery Powered WiFi Camera, Home Security Camera 

This home camera features a 1080P Full HD live stream with night vision that you can watch anytime through its adorcam mobile app. 

It has a two-way audio and motion detection system that sends alerts to your phone when an unusual motion has been detected. It can also endure extreme weather conditions.


  • Design for all weather conditions
  • Night vision
  • Audio and motion detection
  • Sends alerts to your smartphone


  • SD card is sold separately

More info can be found in this link!

How to Determine if its a Police Drone at Night 

Being able to distinguish a police drone is important to help you avoid getting it mixed up from a spy drone. 

So how would you determine a police drone? Police drones are commercial drones and not military drones, they look much like hobby drones, the only difference is that they have blue and red strobe lights. 

Bottomline – What To Do When You Notice a Drone Camera Spying You


Do follow the ways provided to know how to spot a drone especially during nighttime! 

But what to do after spotting a drone? Note that due to Federal regulations, we cannot just attack a drone as this can lead to legal trouble for you.

If you feel like you are being spied on, that can be a form of stalking or harassment. It is best to contact the local authority if you feel like your safety is being compromised! 

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