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What are your favorite fish types? What are you growing with now?  What are the pros and cons you've discovered in working with different fish?

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Hum Interesting.

Well, try searching the internet for some farms/hatcheries in Kansas and other states then. I know some places even ship fingerlings. The place I get my catfish fingerlings ships fish but I would not recommend anyone in CO get fish from FL. I would try to get fish from somewhere with similar climate.

Happy hunting!!!!!!
John, if you find something let me know. I'm up for trying catfish this summer too.
Hi Pamela,

Great detective work! Sometimes the places that stock ponds will be willing to sell smaller amounts of fry if you are willing to pick them up (that's how John and I got our Trout from Lilley here in Boulder). Where is the catfish farm? Have you contacted them? I'm also looking for a source for perch. Have you run across any sources for those in CO?

Sylvia

Pamela Urbas said:
We are also looking to try catfish. I've found places that stock ponds in Colorado but have not had luck finding a source for smaller amounts and sizes.
Interesting, Pamela! We should give Lilley a call. I'm about 2 months away from being ready for new fish - I want to wait until I"m out of the greenhouse and back on the deck. Thanks for looking into this!

Pamela Urbas said:
Hi Sylvia,

I found a couple online lists of CO aquaculture facilities:

http://www.colorado.gov/cs/Satellite/Agriculture-Main/CDAG/11848341... (This list was nice because it shows what each place has)

and

http://www.colaqua.org/list.htm (which has some websites listed)

Second site has some links to websites, but doesn't have the list of fish. Liley Fisheries ) was actually a place I'd looked at that stocks catfish and they also list yellow perch on the second list. No mention of stocking (not surprising of course), so I'm not sure what they are doing with them. I haven't contacted anyone directly yet.

Sylvia Bernstein said:
Hi Pamela,

Great detective work! Sometimes the places that stock ponds will be willing to sell smaller amounts of fry if you are willing to pick them up (that's how John and I got our Trout from Lilley here in Boulder). Where is the catfish farm? Have you contacted them? I'm also looking for a source for perch. Have you run across any sources for those in CO?

Sylvia

Pamela Urbas said:
We are also looking to try catfish. I've found places that stock ponds in Colorado but have not had luck finding a source for smaller amounts and sizes.
8-10" might be a bit big but if you get some that big it means you will get to have a feed of your fish much sooner. the first batch of catfish I got were anywhere from 4-10+ inches Most of them were probably between 6 and 9 inches and that was ok.

I've gotten some that were smaller than 3" and that is really tiny for catfish fingerlings. I expect a really good size for starting off an aquaponics system with catfish is probably anything between 3 and 7 inches. The place I get mine from usually sell 3-5 inch for a lower price and 5-7 inch for a bit more. If you are starting them off in a smaller fingerling tank, then 3-5 inch might be appropriate and if they are going directly into a big tank, go for the 5-7 inch or bigger.

This is just me but I like 300 gallons or more to grow out catfish to plate size, they can be long fish and it would make me uncomfortable to look at them in a 50 or 100 gallon tank as they start getting bigger. A 20 to 100 gallon tank might be fine for the really small fry/fingerlings but when I put some of the 5-7 inch fish into a 50 gallon tank for quarantine a year and a half ago, they were pretty stressed out and suffered skin disorders, I'm not sure if it was entirely the size of the tank or the color of the tank or the water flow but I think it was mostly the size/shape of the tank compared to the size of the fish.
Pamela, that's great news! Now I just have to figure out where to put them...;-) Tore out a bunch of the older, winter plants a few weeks ago that were pretty spent and buggy (broccoli, cucumber) and now have a ton of seedlings, but they aren't keeping up with the fish. That said, I guess I need to figure it out (maybe give away some tilapia) 'cause I sure don't want to miss out on catfish.

If you think about it, would you let me know when you go over there and I'll meet you there so we can officially meet. Thanks again!

Pamela Urbas said:
I emailed Lilley and they are expecting 8-10" fingerlings the first week of May and asked that I call back then to check on availability. That would work fine for us because I expect the pond to be stable by then, but that's quite a bit bigger than I expected! I guess I should be searching for catfish "fry" but that's darn hard to google w/out endind up with recipes. ;)

Sylvia Bernstein said:
Interesting, Pamela! We should give Lilley a call. I'm about 2 months away from being ready for new fish - I want to wait until I"m out of the greenhouse and back on the deck. Thanks for looking into this!

Pamela Urbas said:
Hi Sylvia,

I found a couple online lists of CO aquaculture facilities:

http://www.colorado.gov/cs/Satellite/Agriculture-Main/CDAG/11848341... (This list was nice because it shows what each place has)

and

http://www.colaqua.org/list.htm (which has some websites listed)

Second site has some links to websites, but doesn't have the list of fish. Liley Fisheries ) was actually a place I'd looked at that stocks catfish and they also list yellow perch on the second list. No mention of stocking (not surprising of course), so I'm not sure what they are doing with them. I haven't contacted anyone directly yet.

Sylvia Bernstein said:
Hi Pamela,

Great detective work! Sometimes the places that stock ponds will be willing to sell smaller amounts of fry if you are willing to pick them up (that's how John and I got our Trout from Lilley here in Boulder). Where is the catfish farm? Have you contacted them? I'm also looking for a source for perch. Have you run across any sources for those in CO?

Sylvia

Pamela Urbas said:
We are also looking to try catfish. I've found places that stock ponds in Colorado but have not had luck finding a source for smaller amounts and sizes.
300 gallon tanks sounds great, how much filtration you got going?
Catfish can easily get to 2 lb or more so I would figure 1 fish per 10 gallons of flood and drain gravel bed or perhaps even less to start since you are not really cycled and will need to monitor feed rate and ammonia/nitrite levels closely for the first couple months after you add the catfish.
Hi Pamela,
Nice to meet you! I do get great aeration with my towers, but I definitely recommend additional aeration, esp. if you're going with catfish. I always err on the side of caution and then scale back. sounds like you're on the right track!

Nate

Pamela Urbas said:
We are actually looking at NFT using at least 6 vertical tubes, somewhere in the neighborhood of 3-4 feet long each. We have room to do flood and drain gravel beds as well if needed. We could also add another support row and put 2-3 more poles in if necessary. Right now I have enough basil, lettuce and spinach germinated to be able to populate four the tubes in about two weeks, as well as tomatoes and peppers for the other two.They may not fruit but they should put out plenty of roots. In the meantime we'll have water going through several different types of media to compare flow rates and oxygenation. We put the tank and the supports for the verticals in yesterday. Tubes will go in as soon as the water gets going. We have been heating-cooling the greenhouse so far using 100 gallons and a heat exchanger, but since it's got lead solder in it, we have an aluminum radiator showing up tomorrow that we have a fan for. There will be regulator valves to keep the water from getting too hot or cold from the air.

I was planning on getting 100 or so goldfish to get things going and then moving them outside and bringing roughly 30 catfish in, so that sounds about right. I was planning on monitoring temperatture, ph, ammonia and nitrite twice daily until things were relatively stable. I haven't done the research on the feed rate yet, but I'm getting there.... :) I also plan on adding a good-sized airation tube. The guy on here who's the massive vertical system is getting enough aeration just with his tubes, but I'm a little wary.

TCLynx said:
300 gallon tanks sounds great, how much filtration you got going?
Catfish can easily get to 2 lb or more so I would figure 1 fish per 10 gallons of flood and drain gravel bed or perhaps even less to start since you are not really cycled and will need to monitor feed rate and ammonia/nitrite levels closely for the first couple months after you add the catfish.
I've got plenty of white scale precipitating all over my liner but I have not needed to clean my air diffusers yet and some have been in service for close to two years now. But I am also glad they can be revived with an acid soak if they do get clogged up.

I am also in favor of extra flow and/or aeration even with fish that might not be as picky about it. I've found tilapia will eat even better with extra aeration going.
OK, Nate, is "scale back" the beginning of a series of fish puns?...

Nate Storey said:
Hi Pamela,
Nice to meet you! I do get great aeration with my towers, but I definitely recommend additional aeration, esp. if you're going with catfish. I always err on the side of caution and then scale back. sounds like you're on the right track!

Nate

Pamela Urbas said:
We are actually looking at NFT using at least 6 vertical tubes, somewhere in the neighborhood of 3-4 feet long each. We have room to do flood and drain gravel beds as well if needed. We could also add another support row and put 2-3 more poles in if necessary. Right now I have enough basil, lettuce and spinach germinated to be able to populate four the tubes in about two weeks, as well as tomatoes and peppers for the other two.They may not fruit but they should put out plenty of roots. In the meantime we'll have water going through several different types of media to compare flow rates and oxygenation. We put the tank and the supports for the verticals in yesterday. Tubes will go in as soon as the water gets going. We have been heating-cooling the greenhouse so far using 100 gallons and a heat exchanger, but since it's got lead solder in it, we have an aluminum radiator showing up tomorrow that we have a fan for. There will be regulator valves to keep the water from getting too hot or cold from the air.

I was planning on getting 100 or so goldfish to get things going and then moving them outside and bringing roughly 30 catfish in, so that sounds about right. I was planning on monitoring temperatture, ph, ammonia and nitrite twice daily until things were relatively stable. I haven't done the research on the feed rate yet, but I'm getting there.... :) I also plan on adding a good-sized airation tube. The guy on here who's the massive vertical system is getting enough aeration just with his tubes, but I'm a little wary.

TCLynx said:
300 gallon tanks sounds great, how much filtration you got going?
Catfish can easily get to 2 lb or more so I would figure 1 fish per 10 gallons of flood and drain gravel bed or perhaps even less to start since you are not really cycled and will need to monitor feed rate and ammonia/nitrite levels closely for the first couple months after you add the catfish.
"OK, Nate, is "scale back" the beginning of a series of fish puns?..."
But catfish are scaleless!!!! ; ) Tehe
Ahhh. Didn't know that. The things I learn with this group...

So I decided to see if there actually were any catfish puns and here is what I found

What did the catfish say when it swam upstream and hit its head on a concrete wall?
Dam!

But then thre was the carp joke that made me laugh for a full minute (yes, this says a lot about my sense of humor)...

Two fishermen were out on the lake when one of them dropped his wallet. As they watched the wallet flutter down toward the bottom, a carp came along and grabbed the wallet. Soon came another carp who stole it away and then a third joined in. Remarked one of the fisherman, “That’s the first time I’ve ever seen carp-to-carp walleting.”


Can you stand it?!?!

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