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I was wondering if there are any Ideas how to balance my system without any expensive tests. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to afford a test kit. Maybe it's not possible but I thought maybe someone has had success with something that I could glean from. I started my system with goldfish as I have always had success with them living long in just a bowl that we keep clean. Well why would they all die when the plants are helping me? Too many? - I've never had so many (15 or less) but I've also not had a 55 gallon aquarium either. I've had little one to two gallon bowls before. All of my fish died.

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I am hoping to get to the country... we are in town and I am raising quail in a trailer in my driveway- it's cool but I love the homesteading stuff and am praying for a miracle farm!


Kellen Weissenbach said:

Quail are awesome, aren't they?  I raised quail for years.  I'm actually looking forward to doing that again when we get settled on the new farm this August.
I have had 2 minnows in my system for awhile. they were left over from a fishing trip. I have just been sprouting wheat grass from system. Nutrients aren't needed for this but it is auto rinsed and that helps. I wait until the enzyme inhibitors are rinsed off before putting them in the system. I tray the sprouted wheat seeds and place the tray (with paper towel media) right on the hydroton. I keep it covered for darkness for a few days and then uncover it and turn grow lights on to let it green up. Yum
That will also work for pea shoots, sunflower shoots, radish and turnip shoots, corn shoots and probably several others.
 We have been sprouting as you suggested and have learned a bit and enjoyed it! We like the sunflower shoots! I just haven't done it in the system yet. That's a good Idea.  we didn't like the peas as much so the second round just went to the garden to get more peas to cook!
We found that if you leave them too long the sunflower shoots get bitter so get em early.

yes and the nutritional value drops. (for any sprout) - And we are making great strides with our quail -towards food production.

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