I might be in over my head here so help will be greatly appreciated. Im volountering at a farm in India and because I said i was interested in aquaponics they apparently think im some sort of expert
They are trying to become fully self-sustaining and up until 2 years ago they fished the pond they have. They turned vegan and are looking to take advantage of the lake in another way. Since they ate the fish before im thinking the water is clean enough, at least by Indian standards. It is a 2-2.5 acre pond (pics included), dividede into 2 ponds connected by a narrow strip.
I have a few questions that i hope you can help me with.
Im going to run the water through an HPLC to test for micro- and macronutrients, should tell us if it is even possible to grow anything on the lake or if it is a fully enclosed ecosystem. I have been looking around the internet for a formula to calculate aprox amounts of plants able to grow based on the nutrients, but so far unsuccesful. I know this depends a lot on the type of plant as well, but any help will be appreciated. At the moment i dont even know what they want to plant.
Second I was considering which setup to use. In a pond of this size a raft system might be viable (again, we will need the wateranalyzes before we can say anything for sure). The problem with a raft system as far as i can tell is aeration of the water, since theres no pump and no drop. By placing the rafts in the narrower part of the pond we should be able to ensure a steadier stream of "fresh" water through the root system, at least thats my theory. Fins underneath the raft might also help to "plow" the water and aerate it. A solar powered airpump attached to the raft might also be viable. Any input on this is greatly appreciated.
Fish eating the roots might be a problem, so my idea is to put a net both on top and bottom of the raft, thus preventing both birds and fish from going at them. A fine net on the bottom will also prevent waste from attaching to the roots.
Looking forward to your replys and i will keep you update as I progress.