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Just Don

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About Just Don

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    North Texas (Dallas area), USA

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  1. Are the bsf larvae from the pet stores - for lack of a better term - viable?
  2. I just got myself a used BioPod. I am interested in starting a BSF colony in north Texas (Dallas area), and hopefully keeping it warm enough to stay active well into the cooler months (or even through the winter...?). Is anybody aware of anywhere around here that I could acquire a "starter set" of BSF to jump start my pod? With the fact that I live in a fairly newly built-out area with immature trees, etc., I'm not sure there will be a great supply available living in the canopy currently. As a result, I'm hoping to give it a little boost.
  3. If I do find them, will the fish eat them, and (assuming the answer is yes) is there any reason not to pick them off and just toss them in the FT as a... supplement?
  4. Hello from yet another newbie in the Dallas area.
  5. These are exactly like my growbeds. Glad to see somebody else using them. They do work pretty well - although as somebody pointed out, they do tend to bow out on the sides when fully loaded. I am using the lowest of low-tech solutions for this, though. I simply tied a piece of twine around the growbed to hold the sides in. (Actually, I could do it with a single piece of twine, but I have a few so that if one breaks I don't have a problem.) I even got them at Lowe's, too. (Just kind of stumbled upon them - can't even claim I went looking for them.)
  6. And they are really good folks, too! (Hi, Mom! )
  7. So... what do you use, then? Something else, or do you just not have a system anymore? Why the choice you made?
  8. Pardon the dumb question, but what is K1?
  9. I have roughly 30 gallons of grow bed media, which is about 75% red lava rock (bottom of GB) and 25% river rock (top of GB). Thanks, Don
  10. 2.5 what per fish? Gallons? Liters? Something else? Thanks, Don
  11. Okay... I've seen various "rules of thumb" out there for designing an aquaponics system (i.e. 1:1 ratio of volume of grow beds to volume of fish tank). However, I'm struggling with how I can know how many fish my system can support. How can I calculate the "carrying capacity" of my system knowing that I have built it to a 1:1 ratio. Obviously the chemistry is different between systems that have the right volume ratio if one system has a single fingerling and a grow bed full of plants, and the other has 100 full sized fish and one little seedling. (I suspect in the first case you'd have scrawny "weakling" plants, and in the second case you would soon have much fewer than 100 fish.) Any suggestions? (My intent is to have a grow bed full of seedlings planted at 6-8" intervals, and to stock the FT with tilapia fingerlings.) Thanks, Don
  12. I built my test system around an auto-siphon concept for a "flood and drain" system. It's working pretty well so far, so the complexity of such a system doesn't seem to be prohibitive. I was asked "why an auto-siphon tank instead of just keeping the water at a constant level and allowing it to overflow to a recapture in the FT? Wouldn't the water at a constant level be better for the plants?" My eloquent response was... "ummm... Something to do with avoiding root problems and bringing oxygen down to the bacteria in the growbed?" So... I know that there are probably proponents of both a flood and drain concept and of a constant flow concept for AP. Can anybody explain what the pros and cons are of each type? Thanks! Don
  13. As an aside, the pH of the water is a little high (8.2-8.4 range). I know that over time it will drop, but it seems a little high in the meantime, potentially resulting in nutrient lockout for the plants. That leads to two questions. 1. Should I treat it to try to drop the pH a bit (slowly)? 2. If so, should I use household white vinegar? Highly dilute muriatic acid? Something else? I know that if I do so I want to do it slowly. Any suggestions are welcome.
  14. Disapproved. We need to see the new system...
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