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11/27/13

mahfudz' backyard aquaponic: Problems

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Problems: Dilemma on growth - solid waste in the gutters


In my previous article on the 'Good Reads for AP' the article did mention that having the solid waste present in the AP system as being a threat to the system. I thought over it and it does make sense especially with gutter type setups. In conventional growbeds where solid wastes are allowed to settle in, the waste would rot, release ammonia and quickly come in contact with the nitrification bacterias hence the ammonia problem may not be as significant. In conventional growbeds you can also add worms to it to help digest the waste but not with a gutter setup. After a month of running the AP system in Dengkil, the plants doesn't seem to grow well. I figure that the plants may be lacking iron but even so, when I was starting my system the plants wasn't growing as slow as this. Then, referring to the article I read by Growfish about the potential problems with trapping the solids in the grow beds/channels I think I might have found the answer. Somehow, when we ran the system immediately it was laden with solid waste settling in the gutters. At first I thought it wouldn't be critical however after a week the gutters were about half-full with sediments. Think about it, gutter type system has very minimal amount of media since it is designed to just flow nutrient full water to the plants, not to perform any mechanical or biofiltration. Once you have the solids in there it will settle, where it settles it will rot, and where it rots comes ammonia. What I think is the root cause of the growth problem is the fish poop in the gutters. The gutters have become the releasing point of ammonia where there is minimal flow of water and minimal media to immediately convert it to nitrates. Ammonia, being alkali in nature may affect the pH in the gutters and hence will eventually affect the pH of pond, and high pH is bad for nutrient supply. I might be wrong, but at the moment the water in the gutters though they come after they passed the pond filter, is now passing through solid wastes in the gutters. I'm thinking the plants are being choked by the rotting solids in the gutters. So if we build a sediment catcher tank which will help the solids to settle and the water filtered to remove the finest particles, perhaps will get back to the good state and solve the problem. The trapped sediments will continue supplying ammonia to the water and may also be removed if present in excess. This tank is what we intend to build!

mahfudzaquaponic.blogspot.com/search/label/Problems

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11/27/13

mahfudz' backyard aquaponic: Problems

mahfudzaquaponic.blogspot.com/search/label/Problems

2/2