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use duck pond water for fodder and fertilizer

 
Cash Olsen
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I have just created a couple of brief Youtube videos to illustrate how I have created a recirculating water duck pond. In these two videos I show how I have approached the problem of cleaning up the water, grow a biomass that expands quickly (water hyacinth) and can be used as source of fodder or fertilizer. I have plans to extend this.

http://youtu.be/jB9MDlh29nI Part 1

http://youtu.be/sW2fbFUhL00 Part 2
 
Kari Gunnlaugsson
pollinator
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Neat idea, Cash. I've always been interested in aquaponics but gave up on the idea as it's way too energy intensive to keep a system with fish going through my winter. Do you think ducks would work with a more standard flood and drain or raft aquaponics bed...or is it a completely different 'kettle of fish'?
 
Robin Hones
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QUACKERPONICS !!!

(Sorry, couldn't resist it.... ) Great idea by the way...
 
Cash Olsen
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Robin Hones wrote:QUACKERPONICS !!!

(Sorry, couldn't resist it.... ) Great idea by the way...


Robin

As far I'm concerned it's a done deal, you've just coined the name for my system. Let's see if it catches on!

By the way, in just the few days since I made those videos the weed has covered the surface of the growbed (bathtub) and is now going to have to be harvested.
 
Leila Rich
steward
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Location: Wellington, New Zealand. Temperate, coastal, sandy, windy,
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bump
 
Abe Connally
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Location: Chihuahua Desert
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duckponics is awesome. Do you know how many ducks per lb of biomass or square foot of grow area?
 
Nicholas Mason
Posts: 91
Location: Colton Or
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Which animals can eat water hyacinth? Does it have a good protein ratio. That is quite idea. Well done.
 
Dave Quinn
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Slightly off topic but we've just started keeping ducks and the keeping the pond reasonably clean is a nightmare. We have high rainfall and a well, but don't want to continually pump from well.

Our pond is just a small 6ft x 4ft plastic liner about 3 ft deep with shelves. We would like to plant, but won't the ducks & hens just eat the plants before they can get established.

Any advice would be welcomed.
 
Julie Bernhardt
Posts: 54
Location: Indianapolis, Indiana
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Dave,
I have only 3 ducks and they eat everything I've tried to plant near the pond. This past summer they even pulled tomato plants that overhung the short garden fence and ate them. I didn't get egg production until I cut them back so I think it stopped them from laying. I started with the preformed garden pond but later sunk it and built it bigger with a nice beach area. I made shelves behind the pond to plant in and 2 stream areas for water filtering plants but they can jump up there and ate everything I try to start there. I have a Laguana skimmer and I have to clean the pads weekly, mostly from the feathers clogging it. I have a dirty water pump that I pump the bottom out 3 or 4 time spring to fall. Winter is when I have to keep a close eye on it so the pump doesn't burn out if the filters clog or water level drops. I'll be watching this thread for suggestions too. I'd like to rig up a aquaponics system using my dirty pond water.
Pond 12.21.2013.jpg
[Thumbnail for Pond 12.21.2013.jpg]
 
Jay Angler
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Hi Cash,

Could we have an update? Did the system keep working for you? What were it's pros and cons?

I could see using the concept with a "flood and drain" quackerponics system by using storage tanks with float valves to keep the pond at more or less the same level, while holding, then flooding grow beds. I suspect that just like with fish, you'd need an awful lot of growing surface and plants to keep up with messy ducks. Looking at my ducks, there will be much more solid waste - dirt, sand, bits of grass - in duck water than fish water. That's where Cash's simple system that grows biomass which can at least be useful as mulch seems to make sense as a "living filter" which could be used at the start of the cycle with the pre-cleaned water then going through the food beds. I suspect there would still be dissolved nutrients for a useful number of edible plants.
 
Meryt Helmer
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Location: west marin, bay area california. sandy loam, well drained, acidic soil and lots of shade
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yes please post an update! I am working out my plan for ducks and love this system and want to find out if it still works.
 
Nicole Alderman
pollinator
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duck forest garden hugelkultur
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Julie Bernhardt wrote: This past summer they even pulled tomato plants that overhung the short garden fence and ate them. I didn't get egg production until I cut them back so I think it stopped them from laying.


Do you (or anyone else) know if the tomatoes were keeping the ducks from laying? Our ducks are 9 and 12 weeks old, and they devour the tomatoes that come free from our local co-op grocery. Should we stop giving them tomatoes?

I am also interested to see how the Duckponics system worked out, too!
 
Julie Bernhardt
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Location: Indianapolis, Indiana
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My ducks were not just eating the tomato fruits but also the leaves. I think that is what effected their laying, not the tomato fruit.
 
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