Aquaponic Gardening

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We need some thoughts about our current situation. We started with 200 fry in June 2010. Since we had a late start and was not able to finish out our growing season with the fish, we made the decision in Oct to heat a room in our shop, and moved them inside. Well after two months of utility bills, we are making some different choices again. We are planning on harvesting out all of the largest fish, and take the loss of not getting the full growth from them. The smaller Tilapia and the few that have bred which are obviously very small will be moving into our heated ping pong room inside the house. Now this is where we need some thoughts from some of you that are far ahead of us. We need to make a decision about making a homemade biofilter for a 600 gallon tank, and a biofilter for a 50 gallon aquarium so we can put some breeders in it to try to get some fry for next growing season. The store bought filters for the aquarium are just too expensive. Hopefully, our fry will be well on their way next year to continue the outdoor aquaponics system that we had last year. Thanks for any help that you can give. K. Hall

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Thanks for sharing the sites.  I'm in the process of building a biofilter and Skippy's site was very enjoyable reading.

Chi Ma said:

A couple of these will work.

Canister filter


Or if you insist on DIY

Skippy Filter

Hi Larry,

I know that Skippy filters claim in an article that they never need cleaning but that would depend on your fish load. From your information I see your fish density looks light so this may not apply to you directly. But as a general note, to avoiding anaerobic issues developing from overload of fish waste solids in AP we can utilize a swirl filter before the bio filter. This way we can trap and remove solids before the bio filter making it more efficient and at the same time avoid clogging.

Hi Harold.  Thanks for sharing your insights on the swirl filter, previously unknown to me.  Looks like you've got a good discussion going on that subject already, so I'll be following.  We recently had a hatch of 2,000-3,000 fry which triggered this new research on the biofilter.  Not much of a problem now, but will be in a few months.  I've added two 300 gallon stand-alone tanks to house the fish, and am installing a 1,750 gallon stand-alone green tank (hatchery) to house the little ones, thus the research on the biofilter.  I intend to use the hatchery as an overflow or source of fish if I need them in my evolving system.  Any fish over the recommended loading for this sized tank will be sold, given away, or eaten.  None of this was planned, all crisis management.

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