I just recently set up an aquaponics fish tank. I have a 25 gallon aquarium with about 7 goldfish in it, 2 or 3 mystery snails, some water wisteria, a marimo moss ball, and some duckweed. In the grow bed i started with some transplanted jalapenos. Soon after I planted corn in an attempt to regulate the ammonia levels of the fish tank. I also planted beans, and a few other plants. So far I am having fun experimenting with this.
Hello Daniel Kern and welcome to the adventure of AP. I have a couple of suggestions and things to think about concerning your AP system. There is no offense meant toward you, the fish, or the AP system. My only aim is to provide good information. Maybe you will find something of use.
It appears that you are not pumping the fish water into a grow bed or bio filter. In my experience you need to filter the water by pumping it through some sort of filter media to clean it. It could be as simple as rocks or even a diy swirl filter. The solid fish waste needs to be removed from the fish tank in order to better minerlize it and make it available for the plants to use. The water returning to the fish tank can also help to add disolved oxygen for your fish and bacteria.
Speaking of the high amonia levels, which can be toxic to your fish, the bacteria in the system need to get established in high enough concentractions to process the amonia. Here is a pic ture of the nitrification cycle.
There is a lot information on the net about building and operating an AP system. I have found a lot of good information at diy aquaponics. The forum there can be especially helpful with AP specific questions.
I can't wait to see more or your adventure. Thanks for sharing.
Thanks for the feedback. I put in a stone filter and put some sand on top. Then i put some grass seeds on that. It's been a couple days since then and I see a few seeds sprouting. I did a few changes of water and so the water is quite a bit more clear now. It appears that the bacteria has reached a symbiosis with the nitrates. and I also have algae growing on the bottom of the aquarium around the rocks. The goldfish have gone weeks without being fed (when I was not around to feed them) and they lived, probably off that algae.
Glad to hear things are going well. It can take 4-6 weeks to cycle a system (nitrate production). It can take well over a year to get a mature system.
Daniel, have you tested your water parametes to see how the system is maturing? I recommend using the API Master Freshwater test kit. This allows you to test ph, NO2, NO3, and ammonia. Deffinitely helpful when keeping your fish and plants happy.
Looks great! It looks like you've got a fair amount of water for the plants you have. I'd encourage you to keep your stocking rate low. You're not going to get a lot of growth or fish in a system like that, but as a conversation piece it's great!
I figured out all of the above measurements are ppm except for ph.
Thanks! I am not looking for a highly productive system, just something to have fun with. I've been just trying growing different things and see how they do. And the challenge of creating a self sustaining system is fun.