Cost and Operations of an Aquaponics System
by Colle and Phyllis Davis
READ THE ENTIRE AQUAPONICS COURSE OUTLINE: CLICK HERE.
The majority of daily tasks include planting, harvesting and feeding the fish.
Repeat the next day.
There are two assumptions that will be made here regarding the operations for a backyard aquaponics system:
1) your installation is, or is similar to, a Portable Farms® Aquaponics System.
2) You have built a medium/media based (not a raft based) aquaponics system. Operations include the steps that are necessary for you to keep the fish and plants alive and healthy.
Here are the daily tasks for operating a Portable Farms Aquaponics System,
plant, harvest and feed the fish.
3. FEED THE FISH
A backyard farm that feeds 8 people generally takes about ten to fifteen minutes per day to maintain. This includes feeding the fish, planting seedlings and harvesting. Operations are NOT time consuming but they are DAILY operations that cannot and should NOT be skipped.
When you’re dealing with living aquatic animals, they require daily care, attention and yes, even affection to remain healthy and grow to their full size. If your fish are ‘stressed’ for any reason, they won’t eat – – – – and if they don’t eat – – – – they don’t poop – – – – and if they don’t poop, your plants will not be healthy. So, if you’re going to be gone for longer than a day or so, ask a friend or neighbor (that you trust) that will take care of your aquaponics system.
Here’s the full cost breakdown of a backyard aquaponics system: READ ON . . .
- Greenhouse: Must be able to keep the interior temperature between 40 and 104° F. The costs are dependent on your choice of design
- Wooden or concrete floor/slab – from $100 to $300
- Insulated stem wall to set the greenhouse on top of for more height – 2×4’s and plywood – $250 to $350
- Fish tank – sometimes known of as a livestock watering trough – $150
- Lumber for the Grow Tray – 2×4’s, 2×6’s, plywood, etc – between $800 and $1,200
- PVC pipe and fittings – $100
- Misc – $250
You may even have some of the materials on hand or have access to recycled materials at a reduced cost. Even if you have to pay full retail price for everything, an operating aquaponics farm is a fantastically good deal. Plus, a Portable Farms® Aquaponics System is infinitely expandable because of it modular design. You can expand it and begin selling the excess to create a small income.
1. Maintaining adequate levels of water in the fish tank at all times.
2. Feeding your fish a high protein fish feed each day (singing to your fish is optional but they do enjoy human contact and they do enjoy the sound of talking and singing)
3. Always wear disposable gloves when preforming tasks in the building
4. Keeping the pH balanced in the fish tank
5. Stocking the appropriate number of fish in the fish tank that is in balance with the area of the grow tray
6. 24/7 aeration provided for the fish at all times (bubbles).
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