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AquaAurora

Greetings

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I realized I never posted in this section after joining.  I've been keeping fish since.. 2012-2013 as pets starting out with a 10g and a dwarf gourami (great 'lil fish was very friendly).  I got into aquaponics rather by accident after a tomato seed spouted behind my sink (don't look at me, niece was over and wanted to make dinner for my husband and me and made a mess with the tomato she cut apparently..)ANYWAYS I decided to look into growing the tomato indoors after I died the mystery sprouted green behind the sink and stumbled into aquaponics and some very simple setups just using an HOB (hang on back filter) to stuff a tomato plant in and grow.  A short time later I had a pleco (South American cat fish) that I was mis-informed would stay small.. tunrs out it gets to 18"!  i research all my fish thoroughly now before buying after that 'mistake'. The pleco was growing very fast and needed a tank upgrade and more help with the nitrates.  In 2014 I ended up with a 55g and an NFT system above it that grew monstrous lettuce and some herbs (forget which.. maybe cilantro) that my husband help me put together.  We simply plumed the outflow from the canister to go through the 4" pvc pipe and dump back into the tank at the other side.  Anyways it was a huge help but the pleco kept growing and by 13" the canister filter could not keep up with the poop and was clogging weekly.  I tried upgrading to the biggest eheim canister I could get and he clogged THAT too so I finally re-homed him.  Found him a good home with people with a huge tank, massive filters, and knowledge keeping plecos so happy for my fish. 

While the nft aquaponics was up (and after it) i got into ripariums which is very similar to aquaponics but nothing's eaten-it uses plants (mostly hose plants for me) that have roots growing directly in the tank.  I originally set up a 20 long with riparium plants, then after re-homing my pleco took the 55g over + 2-g long.. and eventually several smaller betta tanks with house plants above. You can see my 55g riparium in its last days searching my recent threads-had a raok(free plants give away) last week.

That was the end of my aquaponics until this past spring/summer.  I got a 40g breeder and 2 fancy goldfihs-1 oranda and one I think was a mix between ryukin and fantail.  I kept aquatic plants in the tank (yes goldfish can be kept with live plants-they just need a good veggy based diet).  Don't bash on goldies, if you want to grow plant foods but not eat fish they are a great option-make plenty of waste to feed plants and are wonderful pets, like underwater puppies!  Originally my husband help me setup up the tank with a faux in tank sump (fake wall to separate pluming in tank from display area) it was going to be a riparium and I had planned to condense my 20g  long under water display with my 55g riparium plants, but things don't go as planned as those 2 tanks kept running.  I ended up planting remaining lettuce seeds from my 2014 adventure and they grew, again monster lettuce.  I finally had to take the lettuce down after some off thing started happening to the leaves, not sure if it was deficiency or issue from the leaves getting to wet... but A while alter I planted some peppers and spinach. I lost 1 goldfish to an accident-larger river rock slid down and crushed it (no more large rocks in tank).  The other I lost to dropsy (not fun-bacterial infection causes kidney failure which results in fluid buildup in the body and end result in 'pine coning-scales raised away from body) its incurable so I had to put her down.  Before loosing my 2nd goldie I'd gotten 2 new ones both orandas and they're still doing well-no signs of dropsy and past the incubation period for that infection.

Once the jalapeno are big enough to harvest I'll be doing a big of reorganizing and making the aquaponic set up bigger.  The goldfish will be moved into a 75g temporarily and I will drain and gut the 40g breeder-redo silicone on the corners (as I don't trust the original work.. there are air bubbles that are growing larger o.O ) as well as remote the faux wall that's taking up a lot of room in the tank.  I'll re-silicone (or my husband might) and instead of the back 3"  and side 5" being taken up with fake wall, w1 corner will have a faux wall to hide heater and pump.  Will re-plum pump to go above the tank to a storage bin grow bed with clay media and grow lettuce and maybe some herbs or scallions there, then dump back into the tank.  Once the 40g is done I'll probably remove the faux well I'd put in 1 of my 2 75gs and set up a corner cover to protect the heater then do basically the same thing as the 40g-but with canister filter (intake in tank, output in a grow bed above tank (75gs will grow tomatoes, cucumbers, and peppers), dumps out back into tank).  and get tilapia.

Edited by AquaAurora (see edit history)

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