The idea of combining your fish and plants and raising them the same way might sound a little bit silly. I mean, how could you possibly take care of these two completely different species in the same way? One needs water, the other one lives in it. Well, that’s exactly the connection that was necessary in order to build a single system in which both these organisms would live. I’m talking about aquaponics.
Before we go any further than this, I would like to be sure that you are familiar enough with this system. I’m not asking you to be an expert, but knowing what it is and how it works will be of great help, especially if you are thinking of buying one in the near future. As you will see, this is a rather simple and straightforward system, yet it is very interesting.
Simply put, aquaponics is a combination of aquaculture and hydroponics. In other words, it is a combination of raising fish and other underwater animals and growing plants without the use of soil. This is a system that combines the very different needs of these two species and takes care of all those needs in the same way. Better yet, one organism takes care of the other, and vice versa.
While plants can grow without soil, they cannot live without certain nutrients, and that’s where the fish come into play. They produce waste which is then fed to the plants and which has proved to be very good for them. In turn, the plants serve as a natural filter and provide the fish with perfectly clean water. If there’s such a thing as “perfect collaboration”, this would be it.
In addition to being perfect for these two organisms, the aquaponics system is great for the environment. By combining things this way, you are making sure that there is no toxic waste from either of the system’s parts. Plus, you don’t have to use fertilizer and you get to save lots and lots of water in the process.
How To Choose
If you are a beginner in choosing your first aquaponics and you have never bought a tank that was supposed to serve this purpose before, you need to put some thought into your purchasing decision. Buying the first one that you come across might later leave you unsatisfied with the product. There are a couple of important things you need to take into consideration when buying a tank you need in order to set up the aquaponics system, and now we are going to check those things out.
Believe it or not, the shape of the tank is one of the most important factors you will need to consider. It will, of course, depend on the place where you decide to put the tank, but before you decide that, you should hear what makes one shape different than the other. You will find circle, rectangular and square shaped tanks on the market.
The circle ones are held in very high regard and praised by many users because of their ability to improve the quality of water in the tank. In addition to that, they allow your fish to swim against the current and that is something these animals thoroughly enjoy. The circle tank is definitely thought of as one of the best on the market and it is worth your consideration.
Rectangular and square shaped tanks give your fish a bit more room and are generally more spacious. This is also an important benefit. When you opt for one of these shapes, however, make sure that their edges are still a bit rounded. That prevents waste from building up in the corners, which further prevents the creation of harmful bacteria.
When you decide to read more on the best aquaponics fish tank and buy it, the material will be among the first choices you will have to make. Usually, these are made of glass, acrylic, food-grade plastic or fiberglass. There are a couple of important factors you need to take into account when choosing the material.
The very first thing you will need to make sure is that the material is waterproof. I know what you are thinking. Who would make a fish tank that’s not waterproof? While your common sense is right on this one, you still need to check. You would be surprised what people are ready to make and do just to sell their products, even if they are faulty. Don’t let that happen.
Moving on, you should go with a material that can successfully block sunlight, since too much sunlight can cause the appearance of algae. Most importantly, you need a tank that is durable and that doesn’t contain any harmful chemicals that could be dangerous for your fish. Rest assured that the harmful chemicals would reach your plants as well, which is definitely not what you want.
Naturally, size is definitely an important factor. Once again, it will depend on your personal, available space. For a successful aquaponics system, you need a tank the capacity of which is at least 1000 liters. What you need to remember is that bigger tanks are generally better for beginners, because they allow more room for mistakes. Sure, the whole process is a bit slower with a bigger tank, but if you are a beginner, you can regard that as the perfect opportunity to learn.
Before you buy the tank, I suggest you do some more research on the topic of size, as well as on how to choose the best one. The choice will also depend on the type of fish you are getting and the purpose for which you are raising the fish. Last but not least, you should take some time to learn about the ratio of your plant bed to your tank in order to get the best product and have the best experience with this system.