Aquaponics systems have become a force on commercial food growing. They have also become very popular at home because aquaponics systems are so easy to build that it can also be done in your backyard garden or on the roof of your apartment.
Aquaponics is combining hydroponic growing with aquaculture. The hydroponic plants feed off of the by product of the aquaculture fish while simultaneously cleaning the hydroponic water. This creates a beautiful symbiotic relationship. Many species of fish have said to adapt well in aquaponic systems. Tilapia is the favorite species of fish amongst aquaponic growers while cod, perch and bass are also very popular. Tilapia can adjust well to different water conditions, which is one of the reasons Tilapia is so popular among aquaponic farmers. Green leafy herbs are said to cultivate nicely in aquaponics systems. Nitrogen-rich fertilizer is produced in the waste of the fish. The nitrogen-rich fish water is then sent through the hydroponics system where the plants remove the solid minerals and return the water to normal nitrogen levels. This water is then returned to the fish tank were the cycle begins again. This ultimately results in the growth of healthy organic plants. Aquaponics systems also help plants which yield fruits by providing high organic nutrition. No longer are you forced to buy expensive non-organic nutrients for your hydroponic garden.
Water is considered the major component of aquaponic systems after plants and fish. Observing and recording the pH level of water to determine the acidic level of water is of more importance. Testing of water quality plays an important role in aquaponics systems. The percentage of dissolved oxygen, ammonia, nitrate, chlorine and carbon dioxide also need to be monitored. Since the growth of fish changes the density of the fish in the tank which results in changes of the composition of water contents it is always advisable to have regular checks of the water.
As mentioned earlier aquaponic systems are very “green” to the earth. Plants use the waste of the fish and simultaneously clean the water which is then re-pumped into the fish tanks. Removing the need for plant fertilizer and reducing the amount of water needed for hydroponic growing.
One important piece required for home aquaponics systems is the energy pump. This is required to pump out the water from the tank to grow bed and then gravity flow is used to push the clean water back to the fish. The grow bed is a container to put your plants in. To maintain the proper nutrient levels in the water one must make sure there is a constat flow between the fish and the plants.
Appropriate aquaponic systems must be adapted depending on the nutrition’s required by plant and deciding on the species of fish to be used. Usually, water temperature is controlled by using an aquatic water heater. Usually, 70- 80 degree of temperature is maintained in the water depending on the species of fish and plants. aquaponics systems are known for there environmentally friendly cultivation of plants and fish.