Sylvia - thanks for the invite to the group and for pointing me to the Gator Farm for tilapia fingerlings. I've emailed them and am
waiting for their response.
I wanted run my plan for tilapia by everyone and see if anyone had any suggestions. I recently built a 12x16 greenhouse up at
7600 feet in Evergreen, CO, in which I will grow vegetables in soil (seeds
started sprouting today!) . In this greenhouse I have placed a 100 gallon black
stock tank that I picked up at a garage sale for $10. The main reason I put it
in the greenhouse was for thermal mass, but also want to experiment with growing
out fingerling tilapia for the table/freezer. Obviously I'll need to heat it,
but that's okay because the heat will just escape into the greenhouse which will
need it anyways. For aeration I planned on just doing an air pump with airstone.
I'll probably feed commercial (Aquamax?), with the occasional vegetable scrap
tossed in. Maybe I'll grow some duckweed on the side as well...
My main question is about filtration - since this is a "closed tank" and not tied into a hydroponic system (not yet!), my plan was
to drain water out the bottom spigot daily, individually fertilizing my plants
in the greenhouse. Will this approach be enough to keep the water quality good
enough for the tilapia, or do I need an actual filtration system? If it would
work, how much should I drain off on a daily basis (10%? 25%?).
Is there anything else I would need to do to "treat" the water for tilapia? I'm on a well, which was recently tested and is
good water (for people at least)...
Finally, in terms of density, if I followed the 1/4 lb fish per gallon rule, and planned to grow them out to 1 lb (that is normal
harvest weight, right?), then I should probably only put in 25 fingerlings,
correct? Any way I can up that density without jeopardizing the
Anything else I'm forgetting?
Thanks for everyone's input!