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Aquaculture & Aquaponics

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  • Aquaculture & Aquaponics

    This has been touched on in the big thread, but figured it is worthy of a thread on its own.





    After I posted in the big thread that micro-hydro turbines could oxygenate the water for fish ponds, I watched the above video and laughed, because Sepp had that figured out 30 years ago.

    One thing about the two systems posted above, is that they are not just square tanks. There are tons of solid surfaces within the water. In Holzer's system, extra edge is provided by submerged tree trunks with lots of roots. In the Spanish system, the wetlands and little islands provide edge. I used to fish a lot, and you know that fish love structure...first it provides places to hide, but also provides anchor for algae that form the base of the food chain.

    Curiously, neither of the systems above raise ducks, which would seem a natural synergy with the fish, or any particular aquatic plants, such as rice, lotus, watercress, waterchestnuts, etc.

  • #2
    neat stuff, I seriously need to move further from Tokyo so I can actually do stuff like that!

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    • #3
      Originally posted by docomomo View Post
      neat stuff, I seriously need to move further from Tokyo so I can actually do stuff like that!
      You can do aquaponics on a couple of square meters. There are some very compact and productive systems, though they will require more inputs than the above.

      More stuff:




      podcasts:

      http://agroinnovations.com/index.php...rdette-part-i/

      http://agroinnovations.com/index.php...-permaculture/

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      • #4
        The dark side of aquaculture:



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        • #5
          Shrimp Roe's Alright Harvest





          Last edited by Yukkuri Kame; 2011-02-17, 02:43 PM.

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          • #6
            Thanks for all these vids Yukkuri. Very interesting. It is good to see systems developed where waste from one becomes an input for another - a basic permaculture principle. The aquaponics concept is so much more sustainable than hydroponics where all inputs tend to be in the form of chemical fertilizers.

            BTW As far as scale goes, I've actually heard of people linking a small-scale "hydroponics" system to a domestic ornamental fish tank to grow a few extra veggies while cleaning their fish-tank in the process!

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            • #7
              Matching inputs and outputs is key. Aquaponics is a huge leap forward from aquaculture, but I have yet to see really efficient designs to deal with the energy inputs necessary to pump & oxygenate water. I admire the elegance of the low-input systems like the one in Spain, Sepp Holzer's & Geoff Lawton's. They all run on gravity working in the hydrological cycle.

              100 mm of rain on one hectare of land = 1ML (million liters) of water - an olympic swimming pool. 1550 mm per year, or about 130mm per month is a good figure for much of Japan. So a hectare receives about 1.3 olympic swimming pools of water per month on average. That is a lot of water to work with.

              Sloping land is considered inferior, but for catching, storing, moving and using the kinetic energy of water, sloping hillsides are far superior.

              Wow...I just found an AWESOME rainwater catchment calculator...uses google maps to calculate area and plugs in local rainfall, does the calcs for you.

              http://www.save-the-rain.com/world-bank/

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Yukkuri Kame View Post
                ... I have yet to see really efficient designs to deal with the energy inputs necessary to pump & oxygenate water. I admire the elegance of the low-input systems like the one in Spain, Sepp Holzer's & Geoff Lawton's. They all run on gravity working in the hydrological cycle.

                ... Sloping land is considered inferior, but for catching, storing, moving and using the kinetic energy of water, sloping hillsides are far superior.
                In Australia windmills were traditionally used to pump water from underground bores and wells. Perhaps something like that could be adapted.

                Sloping land has lots of advantages for many systems, but of course flat land is "simpler" and suits simpler ideas... (like flat monoculture fields and mechanized agriculture).

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                • #9
                  Good on you for starting a thread about this.

                  A few years back, I spent some time reading aquaponics forums. Two salient points:
                  * Start small. A ten litre fish tank with an aquarium pump (and associated filters, etc) feeding a kitty litter tray for the plants (directly draining back to fish tank) and placed in a window is a good way to come to at least an intellectual understanding of how the system works.
                  * Be prepared for a steep learning curve. Lots of potential problems to overcome- there will be initial failures.

                  Another compact system video: Living in a flat? Barrelponics on yer verandah-
                  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QHn_OnwzStQ

                  Local fresh water fishies that make good tucker?
                  Carp, eel, trout or ayu... short discussion of some prob's:
                  http://www.lib.noaa.gov/retiredsites...1/kawatsu.html

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                  • #10
                    Very interested in aquaponics. Could this be used in a sunroom attachment to the house to grow plants as some kind of air filter as well? What issues could you run into having it connected directly to your house?

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by hml View Post
                      Very interested in aquaponics. Could this be used in a sunroom attachment to the house to grow plants as some kind of air filter as well? What issues could you run into having it connected directly to your house?
                      Honestly, I don't know, not having ever set up a system of my own. My guess would be if you went for a high density of fish, you could run into some odor issues. Increasing the ratio of plants to fish should keep the system running cleaner. Otherwise, it would add a bit of humidity to the air, which could be welcome or unwelcome.

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                      • #12
                        Thanks for the links, Antweazel. I have been wondering about Ayu and Eel in particular.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Yukkuri Kame View Post
                          Honestly, I don't know, not having ever set up a system of my own. My guess would be if you went for a high density of fish, you could run into some odor issues. Increasing the ratio of plants to fish should keep the system running cleaner. Otherwise, it would add a bit of humidity to the air, which could be welcome or unwelcome.
                          Well, I'm assuming that there is a balance to be had between the fish and plants. "Too many" plants would mean an unbalanced system (therefore systematic failure??) I'm curious how much fish smell comes from one of these systems that is "in balance".

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by hml View Post
                            Well, I'm assuming that there is a balance... "Too many" plants would mean an unbalanced system (therefore systematic failure??) I'm curious how much fish smell comes from one of these systems...
                            I have some experience with planted "nature aquariums" as well as having seen a few indoor "hydroponic" systems in my time (usually disguised as closets or fridges) so I'll extrapolate what I understand of them...

                            Too many plants wouldn't put the system "out of balance" as such. The only down-side is that the plant growth would be reduced due to lack of nutrients. You wouldn't end up with total failure or bad smells. I imagine each system would take some experimentation to determine the best amount of plant material for optimum yield over time.

                            OTOH too many fish would ultimately result in a stinky situation and eventually sick or dead fish as the waste products not consumed by plants build up to toxic levels.

                            With ornamental aquariums there are certain bacteria which are placed in the filter for the purposes of breaking down nitrates and other waste products, and using the right type does help reduce any odour from the aquarium. I'm wondering if a dash of these bacteria in the plant growing media might also be beneficial? Only experimentation would tell for sure. The bacteria are usually available from aquarium stores - my favourite type was "Seachem Stability" but there are many brands...

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                            • #15
                              Any of youse Blokes keen for a group build/build-along?
                              From some cr@p lying around the shack, I assembled the gear below to get an idea of how this could work.

                              175 litre mega-bukkit (tiger fer scale)


                              Bag'O'Sand underneath to level


                              R.A.G. frame from scrap. Definitely will build final version to stand alone (not for the tank to take the weight) and to incorporate a roof.


                              Cement-mixin' thang- will use a new 'un in the final version


                              Need to decide on ratio of tank to grow bed. At this stage, thinking of making an overflow pipe to empty into a large bucket, then pumping from bucket to grow bed. Grow bed drains directly back into tank.
                              Thoughts?

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