Aquaponics gardening have proven to be the best modern farming technique that is efficient in minimizing food waste and in return increase productivity. Aquaponics system combines aquaculture (rearing of fish) and hydroponics (growing of plants in inert media without using soil) technologies to bring forth improved productivity, aesthetic value, and environmental conservation all under one roof. Aquaponics fish tanks are key components of aquaponics systems as they serve as home for fish and grow media.
Today, the market is saturated with hundreds of aquaponics fish tanks and it might take a while before a newbie in aquaponics gardening gets to know the right fish tank that will suit his/her garden requirements.
Different aquaponics fish tanks are designed for different setups and fish with regards to the space available and the size of grow beds. If you are planning to own an aquaponics system, then this article will guide you with the various factors to consider when purchasing aquaponics fish tank.
#1. The type of fish you want to rear
The type and size of the fish that you are planning to rear can also help you in determining the right fish tank for your system. Are you keeping the fish for ornamental value or for eating? Do you want your fish to become herbivores, omnivores, or carnivores?
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Depending on your preference, you will be able to pick a perfect fish tank that is capable of support growth and provide an optimal environment for these amazing species to thrive.
#2. Fish tank Setup location
The system location is very vital as it determines the output that you will get from your aquaponics venture. Ensure that you have assessed the climate/ weather of your system location because the growth rate of your plants and fish will be determined by the temperature of the surrounding environment.
Whether it is indoors or outdoors, ensure that you place the fish tanks on a strong base that can withstand the weight of the whole system with breaking. Depending on the available space, you will make a better decision when sourcing the best fish tank.
#3. Fish tank shape
Most of the aquaponics fish tanks are designed in circular, rectangular, and square shapes. Each design has its pros and cons but depending on the available space in your room or garden, you will be in a better position to pick the right shape that will fit conveniently.
With regards to the shape of fish tank, always ensure that your preferred fish tank is capable of allowing free flow of water throughout the system. This is essential as it will help to prevent fish waste from building up around the corners of the fish tank which can lead to bacterial growth.
Circular shaped tanks are mostly preferred as they allow better circulation of air and water flow throughout the system. Gaseous exchange and water flow enhances water quality thus improving the quality of your fish. If you prefer the square or rectangular ones, it is advisable that you go for those ones with rounded edges.
#4. The size of your grow bed
In general, ensure that the ration of your fish tank to your grow bed is 1:1 from the beginning. This ensures that there is efficient supply of nutrients to both plants and fish. Once you have successfully raised both species in your aquaponics system, you can decide to add the number of grow beds by 2x to accommodate other types of plants that you would wish to grow at the comfort of your home.
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#5. The materials used to make the fish tank
The material used to make the fish tank is very essential as it determines the functionality of the system as well as the durability of your fish tank. Most of fish tanks are made of fiber glass or food grade plastic.
Knowing the material used will help you determine whether there is any possibility of chemical contamination which can harm both your fish and plants. Avoid fish tanks which are galvanized or have any element of zinc or copper since they can bring harmful corrosive chemicals to your fish tank. This chemicals affects the PH levels thus, interfering with the chemical balance of your system.
Ensure the material used has the ability to prevent excessive sunlight because exposing your system to too much sunlight leads to the growth of algae. Lastly, ensure that the material used is waterproof and the fish tank has no signs of leakages.
The above tips will help you make the right buyers’ decision by choosing the perfect fish tank that suit your preference and exceeds your expectations.