Posted March 21, 2011 – 7:25 pm in: Aquaponics Advice
The term Aquaponics is derived from a combination of the terms Aquaculture i.e. fish farming and Hydroponics which means the growing of plant without soil. The process of Aquaponics combines fish and plants in a “closed” integrated system and it is one of the most efficient methods of farming yet devised. Because its a closed system – meaning that there is no water loss – aquaponics uses at little as a tenth of the amount of water that traditional farming requires, meaning that it is especially suitable for hot and arid countries.
The system is a fantastic example of a symbiotic relationship. What I mean by this is that the two components of the system – the fish, and the plants, complement each other prefectly and they both contribute equally to the overall success of the process.
Basically, Aquaponics works like this:
The fish poo is turned into fertiliser for the plants by bacteria in the water and, at the same time, the plants return the favour by cleaning the water as they grow. This, of course helps the fish to survive and grow bigger which then helps the plants to flourish as they produce waste material, and so on.
Aquaponics is a true win-win situation.
In fact, Aquaponics such a beautiful model of cooperation that once you have set your aquaponics system up, all you have to do is top up the water and feed the fish, and in return you get two fantastic sources of organic food.
Of course, it is important that you set your aquaponics system up correctly in the first place because its vital to achieve a certain balance in this delicate eco-system. For example, if you have too many fish compared to plants, there won’t be enough nutrients produced to keep the plants fed and,in turn, the plants will diminish in size and number and so they wont be able to clean the water sufficiently to support the fish.
The reverse is also true. If you have too many plants in your system then there will be too few nutrients in the water to support them and therefore their ability to extract enough of the nutrients and clean the water will be diminished. As you might deduce – this will mean that the water will get polluted and the fish will die as a result. So, balance is key.
Now, this might sound difficult to achieve, but it is actually a lot easier than it sounds!
Commercial Aquaponics operations are being set up all over the world, even in desert regions where it has, traditionally, been very difficult to grow crops and farm fish. These are large scale affairs, as you might imaginrequiring million dollar investments but, essentially, you can employ the same processes and techniques to benefit from Aquapnics in your own back yard.
The secret to building an effective aquaponics setup is , as you might imagine, to plan everything out before you start. Of course, I hope that you will follow this blog as I show you exactly what needs to be done, and also what you need to avoid doing wrong to benefit from this amazing new farming method, but if you really cannot wait to get started then I recommend that you visit this leading aquaponics guide web site and get hold of the excellent Aquaponics4You book by John Fay which is, to be honest, what got me started.
Its a comprehensive guide to setting up and running your own Aquaponics farm from one of the industries most respected figures. John has been developing his techniques for many years now and has learned from his past failures, and of course from his great successes as well. The guide is beautifully written, full of good, hard facts and also comes with detailed plans that show you how to build the right kind of setup for your environment. It also shows how to stock it and how to maximise the yield. In fact, nothing is left out from filtration methods to feeding schedules and even what kind of plants to buy to get the best results. If you are looking for an introduction to the subject that is both readable and authoratative then this is the guide that I recommend.
Well, thats a brief overview of what aquaponics is all about – in the next post I’ll start describing the best way to set about making your own fully working farm.
Posted October 13, 2013 – 11:29 am in: Aquaponics Advice
One half of any effective aquaponics system are the fish. Pick the right breed and your life will be made much simpler. Now, I wouldn’t recommend goldfish for example because although some people would say that goldfish are beautiful and delicate looking things, they are relatively difficult to care for, and aren’t any good for turning into food. For ease of care, there’s a kind of fish that’s even lower maintenance than the goldfish – it’s the Betta, and the good news is that learning to care for Betta fish is a snap – in fact , they don’t need any care at all. read more »
Posted August 24, 2011 – 7:20 am in: Aquaponics Advice
Posted May 9, 2011 – 7:27 pm in: Aquaponics Systems
Getting The Breed Of Fish Right Is Half The Battle In Aquaponics
One of the most important decisions when setting up any aquaponics system is, obviously, which breed of fish to choose. The correct choice of fish can truly make or break a system and you need to be sure that one you opt for is suitable for the environmental conditions, the size of the tank and even your lifestyle -after all, some species require more husbandry than others.You should also ensure that the breed of fish you decide to use is allowed in your part of the world. For example, one of the most popular breeds of fish commonly used in aquaponics systems – the Tilapia – is actually banned in some parts of the world.If on doubt check with your local university or local authority – its better to be safe than sorry.
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As I mentioned in my first post, the word Aquaponics is derived from a combination of two different terms – Hydroponics which is the process of growing plants without soil – usually in a solution of nutrient rich water and Aquaculture which is , basically fish farming. Aquaponics brings the best of these two processes together and the end result is nothing short of spectacular. Let me explain exactly how it works.
Posted May 7, 2011 – 12:12 pm in: Aquaponics Advice
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If you have been following some of my earlier posts then you will probably have realised that I’m a bit of a fan of aquaponics. Thats because this amazing system for growing vegetables and cultivating fish offers a whole host of benefits.
As well as the obvious environmental benefits there are many others that might not be as obvious but are just as important such as:
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