In an Aquaponics system, the fish and the plants reside in two separate containers but they are a part of the same ecosystem. The fish regardless of their type, size or age will produce waste that is rich in nutrients and nitrogen. If the nitrogen levels increase to a certain level it becomes harmful to the fish and so by channeling this water to growing vegetables (contained in a separate grow container) it helps to filter the water which is then sent back into the fish tank.
The vegetables grow in an organic and healthy environment while the fish thrive in a clean tank of water. After some time the fish that have reached a certain age can be consumed. This is why it is always important that you add fish that you would like to eat or sell to the aquaponics system that you build.
Choosing The Right Type Of Fish
In aquaponics, there is really no right or wrong type of fish. That being said there are a few factors you should consider when choosing fish for your aquaponics system. You need to consider what you want to achieve with the system, the prevailing climate in your city, and the supplies which are at your disposal.
If you do not eat fish you can probably use goldfish which can then be sold for some cash. You can add catfish or Tilapia if you like eating fish. Silver Perch is considered ideal for an aquaponics system since it is not very sensitive to climate fluctuations and tends to be quite resilient.
Here Are a Few Other Factors Worth Considering:
- The tolerance of the fish you chose to ammonia
- The ability of the fish to survive a 5 degree increase or decrease in temperature
- Can eat pellet (also known as fish food)
- Feels happy living in a tank
- Will not eat other fish like fingerlings
Adding Plants To The System
The growth rate of plants i.e. vegetables exceeds those of a hydroponic setup (conventional growing setup) by up to four times for some herbs and vegetables. The biggest advantage is that during the warm season the plants get a lot of warm water through the system’s continuous flood, and flow system. This ensures that they are always hydrated and are getting the nutrients they need to grow rapidly.
When growing vegetables in with an easy diy aquaponics system you need to choose ones that do not grow in the root of the plant. This is because in between the layers of soil and sediments setup to grow plants there is not enough space for these types of vegetables to grow.
That being said you are pretty much open to growing anything you want. The best plants to grow in an aquaponic system include lettuce, broccoli, cauliflower, eggplant, beans and cabbage, etc. You can also grow flowering plants which include roses and sunflowers.
An aquaponics system happens to be the most efficient and eco-friendly way to grow plants and raise fish in a small space. However, it is imperative that you set up the system correctly with the right materials so that things continue to run smoothly providing a healthy environment to both the fish and the vegetables.