The term ‘aquaculture’ in its broadest sense refers to the method of breeding, rearing, and harvesting both fish and plants in a number of different aquatic agricultural environments such as ponds, rivers, lakes, and the ocean.
Aquaponics combines aquaculture (raising fish) and hydroponics (the soil-less growing of plants) into one integrated system.
The marriage of the systems allows plants to feed off the organic fish waste whilst the plants provide a natural filter for the water the fish live in.
The third participants are the nitrifying bacteria or microbes and the composting red worms that flourish in the integrated growing media.
Together they convert solids into vermicompost providing food for the plants and ammonia from the fish waste, first into nitrites, then into nitrates.
By combining both systems aquaponics capitalizes on the benefits of both aquaculture and hydroponics whilst removing drawbacks associated with each.
Allen's are stockists of the Charmel Irrigation & Agricultural Controller (CIAC). CIAC offers a complete and efficient management system for aquaculture projects in South Africa.
Contact us, for more information about the CIAC system.
On average, farmed fish convert feed to edible food as efficiently as poultry, making farmed fish an attractive option for expanding the worldwide animal protein supply.
And when aquaculture is combined with hydroponics we have a remarkably environmentally friendly system. The land footprint is minimal and water usage a fraction of traditional agriculture requirements.
In ‘aquaponics,’ costly fertilisers are eliminated as plants are fertilised via the fish waste and the water, purified by the plants, recirculates to the fish.
However, viable aquaculture requires a good understanding of the processes, reliable management structures, and consistent monitoring.
Without these elements, harvests may fail, putting financial returns under pressure.
Allen's have been involved in a number of aquaculture projects, giving us great insight into making aquaculture viable, however the correct aquaculture systems and management processes must be followed.
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