It is better to have tried and failed than not to have tried at all.
byon 12-28-2009 at 10:35 AM (412002 Views)
That being said, my experiences should make me a better person. I thought I would blog about my experiences trying to get into Aquaponics. Maybe, just maybe, some who read this may be related to the wise man. (It is a Wise Man that learns by the mistakes of others.)
Everything I plan to do is drawn out on paper first. Sometimes I end up with several drawings and then decide my project isn't worth the effort. I had read about Aquaponics on the Internet and decided I wanted to set up my own system. I planned to put my Aquaponic system in my basement. I have a room under my sunspace that is about 8'x20'. The inside wall is solid concrete, 16" thick to support a trumble wall above. The other walls are also concrete, but only 9" thick. I first monitored the temperature of the room, both summer and winter. It was getting up to 77 degrees in the summer, when it was over 100 outside. In the winter, on a subzero day, it would get down to 53 degrees. The summer temps were fine for an indoor garden and to raise Tilapi, but I would have to do something about the winter temperatures. My first project was to install a gas wall heater. It is a gas Procom 18,000 BTU Radiant Ceramic heater from Harbor Freight. I installed it on the wall near the east end where I planned my setup.
Next, my growbeds. I then took our old waterbed box frame, which was in two halves, 37"x85"x9-1/2" deep. I added a 2"x10" to the open side of each half to form my growbeds. I used 4 stacks of 3 8"x16" cement block for under support legs then made a support frame of 4- 2"x4"s on top of the blocks. I lined the boxes with 20 mil vinyl pond liner and installed 1" bulkhead fittings at the center of one end.
I placed an order for 2 4' T8 6 tube commercial high bay fluorescent light fixtures on the Internet. One to go over each growbed. I would suspend them from the ceiling with chains and could easily raise and lower them to the height of my plants.
Now I wanted to build my fish tank. It would be 3'x8'x2-1/5' Deep. My growbeds would hang over the tank a foot, one on each end. Then I would plumb everything together.
Whoa, wait a gosh darn minute here. Before I got to building the tank. Actually, while I was building everything else to this point, I did some Internet research on raising Tilapi. It was then I found out the Department of Wildlife Resources in Utah has very strick regulations on raising fish. Tilapi are not allowed in the state. Trout, Bluegill, and most other species are allowed, but require a special permit at $200.00 a year. Then there are limits as to where you can get your fish. Producers have to be certified and their fish have to be tested before you can have them shipped to you. The Red Tape was more than I could fathom. I shelved my project at that point.
Don't miss the next episode as I change plans and take the project back off the shelf. Complete with pictures.
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