Aquaponic Gardening

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Hey everyone,

 

I know this is a farfetched and potentially ridiculous idea, but I'm planning modifying a school bus to make it a mobile green house and would like to put a small aquaponics system on it.  It's for a non-profit I'm starting, showcasing and educating the youth about permaculture, sustainable technologies, and fresh, healthy food.  

 

I guess the potential problems I see are that the fish don't like movement and get stressed easily that way.  Does anyone know of a specific fish or other creature that wouldn't mind the movement? Or a way to design a smooth riding fish tank?

 

Also, designing a way to have the pump and O2 to be on constantly, supplemental power in one form or another.  

 

Maybe I'm crazy, but I see this as an exciting idea!  I welcome any input or ideas regarding the topic.

 

Thank you

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Well provided the system is designed such that the bus ride won't be sloshing the fish out of the tank, it probably won't be so bad.  I mean it isn't like you will be netting the fish out and sealing them in bags each time the bus moves.  The handling and being transported without filtration and aeration is where much of the stress comes in.

 

Just gotta make sure the weight of water sloshing around won't be upsetting the operation of the bus.

 

Power is fairly easy, just do some looking into how they manage in things like RVs and tour buses.  Plan to hook to shore power when you are stopped.

Crayfish come to mind.

It sounds like a cool concept.

maybe have some type of baffles in the fish tank...?...maybe even removable, just used durring transit ..?

Nick, I featured this on the AquaponicGardening facebook page today and had this reponse

Melissa Mansfield I think it sounds great! Maybe Nick can also get the bus to run on veggie oil rather than straight diesel (or at least biodiesel) to make it really green :) This reminds me of the movie Truck Farm - check it out for some more mobile gardening inspiration -http://www.wildandscenicfi lmfestival.org/truck-farm/

 

Also, AquaticEco liked the idea so much they featured it on their page today as well.  You are on to something here...

Great idea Nick!  James Godsil of Sweetwater Organics had a similiar idea of a mobil set up for introducing aquaponics to schools.  We are meeting with one of our school districts administrators next week to discuss funding and grant opportunities to do the same thing here!  Our mobile facility will be on a trailer with the electric run by an inverter in the tow vehicle.  Being its a seperate trailer, while stationary it just gets parked next to a 110 outlet and gets plugged in there to run the air and pump.  Baffles are definitely the way to go to reduce the sloshing.  We have transported without them with very low mortality rate, but if these fish are going to be constantly subjected to hauling, I really like David's suggestion of removable baffles while in transit.  I would love to hear more updates about your progress!

Thank you all for the wonderful support!  

 

@Sylvia - great!  We were discussing waste veggie or straight veggie oil today, although I don't know much since I haven't started looking locally, but I've heard that it's hard stuff to come buy in the Front-range region.  We'll have to keep diggin'

Thanks for posting it on the wall and sharing it!  Good feedback

 

Baffles do seem like a good idea, or having a fully sealed tank, more designing and research to do still. 

 

@Green Acre Organics - Thanks for the feedback!  Please let me know how the administrative meeting goes, as that's one of our next steps too, finding funding and grant proposals.  Also, I'd love to hear how the whole project progresses.  My email is nlahaise@gmail.com   or on here works well too.  I'll keep you updated as things move!

 

Nick, i have converted a truck to run wvo and have a source in boulder already filtered for $1/gallon, so that shouldn't be too much of an issue.  I think ill be in ned skiing on saturday, if you are going to be around Id love to meet.  My phone doesn't work up there, so we will need to plan tomorrow.

 


Nick LaHaise said:

Thank you all for the wonderful support!  

 

@Sylvia - great!  We were discussing waste veggie or straight veggie oil today, although I don't know much since I haven't started looking locally, but I've heard that it's hard stuff to come buy in the Front-range region.  We'll have to keep diggin'

Thanks for posting it on the wall and sharing it!  Good feedback

 

Baffles do seem like a good idea, or having a fully sealed tank, more designing and research to do still. 

 

@Green Acre Organics - Thanks for the feedback!  Please let me know how the administrative meeting goes, as that's one of our next steps too, finding funding and grant proposals.  Also, I'd love to hear how the whole project progresses.  My email is nlahaise@gmail.com   or on here works well too.  I'll keep you updated as things move!

 

Josh, that's great!  Does that source have a lot of it and consistently?  I would love to talk with you more about that, amongst other things.  Unfortunately, I'll be at Copper Mountain on Saturday (or fortunately :), but would like to meet up soon.  This next week is a little busy for me as I'm traveling to AZ for a youth food summit, but I can early this upcoming week or anytime after the 13th.  I look forward to meeting you!

 



Josh Holleb said:

Nick, i have converted a truck to run wvo and have a source in boulder already filtered for $1/gallon, so that shouldn't be too much of an issue.  I think ill be in ned skiing on saturday, if you are going to be around Id love to meet.  My phone doesn't work up there, so we will need to plan tomorrow.

Sounds great Nick!  And absolutely will let you know how next week goes.  Here is a link of a company, although here in Tampa, but they do BioDiesel conversions.  We met the owner of this company years ago when he owned a big 4 x 4 shop in Tampa.  He had converted his lifted huge Chevy to run on BioDiesel and then drove it cross country using waste fuel from restaurants and then raced it in an offroad race too.  I just was looking to see if there were any articles on his trips but found his new company instead.  Here's the link: http://www.greenmyfleet.com/   Also did you see this post from Vertically Integrated Farms in New York?  http://www.youtube.com/watchv=s4Au9Lo0Yxs  Its fine to email me here or at greenacreorganics@gmail.com.  :)

 

 

Sounds like a great idea! I just started exploring vermiponics again to add more nutrients to the system and to not have to increase fish ratio.  I have a very low stocking ratio.  I'm not sure how best to feed the worms in the system if there weren't fish, haven't figured best way to feed them compost in the system yet.  What about the possibility of running a system strictly with worms (vermiponics) or maybe with just a very small amount of fish to provide nutrients for the worms?
Might be worth starting a Vermiponics thread Michelle.  I know some people who are very keenly into vermiponics but it should be noted that if you are not feeding the fish, you then need to feed the worms directly.  It can be done but it is not Aquaponics, it's Vermiponics.

Michelle Silva said:
Sounds like a great idea! I just started exploring vermiponics again to add more nutrients to the system and to not have to increase fish ratio.  I have a very low stocking ratio.  I'm not sure how best to feed the worms in the system if there weren't fish, haven't figured best way to feed them compost in the system yet.  What about the possibility of running a system strictly with worms (vermiponics) or maybe with just a very small amount of fish to provide nutrients for the worms?
lol, yes, realize that..TC thanks for clarifying.

TCLynx said:
Might be worth starting a Vermiponics thread Michelle.  I know some people who are very keenly into vermiponics but it should be noted that if you are not feeding the fish, you then need to feed the worms directly.  It can be done but it is not Aquaponics, it's Vermiponics.

Michelle Silva said:
Sounds like a great idea! I just started exploring vermiponics again to add more nutrients to the system and to not have to increase fish ratio.  I have a very low stocking ratio.  I'm not sure how best to feed the worms in the system if there weren't fish, haven't figured best way to feed them compost in the system yet.  What about the possibility of running a system strictly with worms (vermiponics) or maybe with just a very small amount of fish to provide nutrients for the worms?

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