Aquaponic Gardening

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Today I decided to clean my pump.  It's been in the water 3 months (5 Nov) and I'd noticed the water pressure slowing down.  I found a great cage for my pump at the thrift store, inserted the pump, wrapped that in old screen from a screen door, and then tied it all up with salvaged fishing net. The surprise came when I started unwrapping the screen and net.  I started noticing movement when I put the pump on the ground.  Upon closer examination, I discovered baby shrimp!

A few months ago, I found a posting on craigslist for free aquarium plants.  So I picked them up from a guy over in Nu'uanu and in the process, brought home a guppy or two and (to our knowledge) one of his shrimp.  He had quite a few, but I thought I only got one.  Well, either I got one that was pregnant or I have unknown entities lurking in the fish water.  Either way, I'm excited.  I was so eager to get them back into their environment, and get my pump turned back on, that I didn't take pics.

When I got my first tilapia from Raychel in November, she brought me guppies too.  Within weeks we had babies!  Pretty cool. They are just plain brown, so I don't know what species they are (got one fancier one with the shrimp).

Oh, and the pump wasn't very dirty, good news indeed! :D

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Comment by Michael Welber on February 21, 2012 at 6:39am

My pump isn't sucking up enough of the fish poop in the tank. Anyone else having that problem. The stuff is collecting a bit on the bottom of the tank. I net some of it up so the ammonia doesn't rise too much but I'm wondering if I need a more powerful pump. The one I'm using now delivers 700 gph. 

Comment by Kirsten Udd on February 12, 2012 at 4:56pm

Well, I would have thought so, but there wasn't an opening big enough for an animal to enter/exit.  There are two holes on one end that are reinforced, a bit bigger than pencil size, but I'm not sure.  The weird part is that is is hinged down the long edge of the cylinder.  I don't think it would matter what you "caged" your pump in, as long as there isn't a lot of crud getting into the pump.  I have my pump in my fish barrel, but it's high enough in the water that if the system has a leak, the pump can't dry out my tank.

Comment by Michael Welber on February 12, 2012 at 4:42pm

Do you think it was an animal or bird cage? Or maybe one of those they keep guinea pigs in? 

Comment by Kirsten Udd on February 12, 2012 at 4:20pm

Hi Michael,

just for you, I'll have to dig it out of the barrel and show you, take pics.  It's actually a cage I bought for a couple bucks at the Goodwill Store in town, but I don't know what its intended use was originally.

I had to cut a hole for the PVC to protrude, but other than that, very few modifications.  It’s been convenient, but I think the real bonus is using the screen door material around the cage to keep the pump clean.

Let me know what solution you come up with.

Good luck!


Comment by Michael Welber on February 12, 2012 at 8:26am

What kind of cage did you use? Do you have a photo. I'm getting a lot of "crud" in my fish tank. It looks like dirt fines or something and think I should put screening around the pump in the sump tank the way you have. 

Comment by Kirsten Udd on February 6, 2012 at 4:11pm

Discovered the second set of baby guppies today :)

Comment by Kirsten Udd on February 5, 2012 at 2:07am

Mine are in the fish tanks!

Comment by Raychel A Watkins on February 5, 2012 at 1:10am

I would like to have some of those shrimps in my troughs,  That way the fish couldn't eat them

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