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PostPosted: Jun 14th, '06, 19:39 
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:D Hi all... :D
I have been totally sucked in by the whole Aquaponics scene in just under 2 months - I discovered it by clicking on the wrong link one Saturday evening and now I am revved up to get my hands (and elbows, feet etc) wet!
So much so that I suggested that we set up a 4m by 8m system on the school premises where I work... I managed to get the attention of one or two staff members, but it has not taken off with all of them - teaching this sort of stuff to rural kids could only have positive outcomes if you ask me...

The problem I am facing is that I can't get funding to do this on a decent scale ... At the moment I have 3 old bath tubs and an old sand filter (with the top quarter chopped off) connected together, with one overflowing into another - and a 1200 lph pond pump circulating the water... as grow beds I am setting up styrofoam shipping boxes (the ones you get vegies in) as my grow beds... Piecing this together from throwaway junk is not easy, but my hope is that I can prove to staff and admin that this is a good thing to do and that I will get some sort of help/support. :?
I would love it if anybody knows people or organizations who would lend a helping hand - I seriously think that the kids could take this sort of know-how into the rural areas and improve there standard of life! I need tanks, grow beds etc etc... I know it’s a dream, but to get this going at school would be the best thing I have done in ages. :P
Oh yes, a local aquafarm said that they would donate our first 20 barra fingerlings, all around the 90mm size, so that area is covered already...
Any ideas out there as to who/how I can get help from???... or will it be bathtub ponds for ever :?: :?:


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PostPosted: Jun 14th, '06, 20:01 
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Hi mate ..

I am doing the same sort of thing at the moment at my school!

I think the secret is not to be too ambitious at first.

I am currently using wheelie bins. and have had the kids also set up three aqauriums.

And it seems to be working.

I got a long way to go... but getting there.

See my post regards the mini system. Might be useful to you.

Regards equipment... go to a QLD fish fanciers site and beg for donations regards equipment and / or fish... maybe even approach a couple of pet shops regards donating a couple of air pumps, whatever you can get your hands on etc. In return .. you place an advert near or on your tanks / bathtubs and bins.

So far all the tropical fish we have were donated. Also three aquariums and several air-pumps were donated!

My only prob is feeding them during the holidays!

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PostPosted: Jun 14th, '06, 20:56 
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Will do - thanks for the advice...
Our goal is to grow fish to restock local streams/rivers (so tropical and ornamental fish wont do for us), and to grow the vegies for families who have fallen on hard times...
I have been hunting for wheelie bins at the dump and buy back shops, but no luck yet


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PostPosted: Jun 14th, '06, 21:13 
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Aquamad

Good to see youve got the bug, but as Johnnie has said, dont be to ambitious at the start, set up a small trial, that can prove it works and you may win more of the staff over.

Also you will gain valauble experience.

Think out side the box, pond liner is fairly cheap, you could build framework and line it, or even dig a hole in the ground and line that.

Do all your stuff ups on a small scale, and work your way up to your ultimate goal.

Warren


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PostPosted: Jun 14th, '06, 21:20 
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hmmm, good idea (I seem to be an expert at time in the /stuff up' department)....
But you can't blame a man for getting this into aquaponics, it just seems so right (like someone switched a light on that was always there, but I did not know of it)...


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PostPosted: Jun 14th, '06, 21:25 
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Local councils may have a stash of bins where wheels have fallen off etc. etc.

Phone a few .. they are great tanks ...

(Hard for the kids to see inside though!)

Also have a look at my post reaards mini-systems in the systems thread ...

http://www.backyardaquaponics.com/forum ... .php?t=145

Also think about any local warehouse that may have plastic tubs and buckets that are past their use by date. (I have a few goldfish in a squat bucket.)

Roll on Summer here in Perth cos I want to see how many cherry tomatoes I can produce from fish poop! How many carnations I can produce too!

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PostPosted: Jun 14th, '06, 21:28 
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Yep AM it does seem so "just right" so much so that it looks like I will have fish before I have a system :shock:

Am I going to be busy over the next week :o

Well it will stop me procrastinating any more thats for sure :P

Thanks Steve :?

Warren


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PostPosted: Jun 14th, '06, 21:33 
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This "earthbound aquaponicus" virus seems to be striking more and more people down :shock:

Symptoms:

checking forum at ungodly hours "just incase some one has posted"

Visiting re-cycle yards and seeing everything as a possible fish or plant container

Running around telling everyone about aquaponics

Spouses are usually unsympathetic to symptoms

disease vector: WWW

First known carrier : only known as earthbound

Cure: Unknown

Mortality rate: Variable depending on spouses disposition

:) :)


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PostPosted: Jun 14th, '06, 21:37 
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LOL
yep, I had the ear of several Great Barrier Reef officials today - telling them all about aquaponics, and even showed them "the book"... they were very interested, but some looked as if they wanted to get away - almost scared - as if they might catch something from me..... :munky2:


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PostPosted: Jun 14th, '06, 21:40 
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Oh yeah, and my wife has banned the topic of aquaponics after sunset... she seems to have had more than she can take about one topic (and I still have SO much to share with her)... guess it will have to wait till sunrise! :D :blackeye:


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PostPosted: Jun 15th, '06, 04:45 
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Some of my friends don't call anymore....... There was a lot of sniggering going on when I had by big fish kill, and open ridicule when I lost most of the second lot.......
I love a challenge.... By Xmas I will have some pretty amazing vegies and some very interesting BBQ's
My remaining 14 or so Jade are powering along now (and one feeder gold fish, the fat mongrel..) The Jade are literally growing daily. Water temp never below 21 deg
I note that Steve is getting some Jade, you won't be disappointed.
I was talking to the guy at the Hatchery at Beenleigh and he said that they will not be breeding Jade next season as they are too easily bred and a lot of Aquaculture farms are now breeding their own.....interesting I think for we Aquaponists'
Down the track I would like to become proficient at breeding a Jade or two....
Murray
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PostPosted: Jun 15th, '06, 06:25 
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Hey Murray,
I'm wanting to do the same thing. One exam left, and then I can start my aquaponics system (YAY!). Want to run a "test" system for 6months/a year then go big :D I can't wait to do what Joel did with the "Sporting Fish Catching" hehehe I can see myself with a rod beside the tank now hehehe

Cheers,

Duncan.
P.S: Murray, you said your Jade were growing almost daily, no more deaths now that they are used to the system?

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PostPosted: Jun 15th, '06, 06:35 
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Duncan,
The Jades are doing really well, no more deaths as yet....everything appears to have settled down....except that in the last two days the ph has swung up again toward Alk...not too much......don't know what is causing that....perhaps Steve might have an idea ?????? Steve ???
I am not doing anything different....perhaps those little bacteria are shifting numbers ?
Murray


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PostPosted: Jun 15th, '06, 07:43 
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I have aquaponitis bad.
All symptoms present. Only cure I feel is to get a system going and FAST. May prevent further deterioration of marriage if I can feed her!!! She says: "aquaponics is great I'm really happy you are into it", then follows up with ... "just to change the subject for a moment, the kids really miss you :!: ..."


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PostPosted: Jun 15th, '06, 07:46 
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I cant wait for the school term to be over either (and for the newest member of my family to arrive, which should happen in the next 7 to 14 days...)
Once all that is over I can spend heaps more time playing with my fish (after I have fetched them that is)... then let the mistakes role on (I keep telling my students that a good way to learn is through mistakes...)
I am "lucky" in that my house backs onto the school where I teach so I can play all day (wife willing) and it is not at home - so no complaints from the wife regarding mess, safety, water use or other costs.


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