Aquaponics Versus the Pet Dog

Submitted by Ready done

Aquaponics is the food production system the world is upgrading to from conventional industrial farming. The major problem it solves is that potassium fertilizer taken from mines and used to help crops produces 40% more fruit. It has worked well for the last 100 years but it is a finite resource and will be exhausted soon enough. When it is gone we will see a 40% drop in food production. The world will be a changed place.

Aquaponics does for fertilizers what biofuel does for gasoline. It fast tracks the potassium cycle from taking 1000’s of years to form underground then to be extracted to mere weeks from fish food. Aquaponics in its simplest form is watering your potted plants with aquarium water and letting the water drain back into the aquarium. This plant/fish relationship held and controlled in manmade containers takes excellent care of both the fish and the plants because the fish manure contains nutrients which the plants use. This is good news for anyone wanting to grow food who has never kept fish. The water begins in the fish tank and drains back into the same fish tank therefore only what the plant needs is taken. The rest of the water goes back to the fish and when the plant uses up the fish waste the water gets clean so you don’t have to clean your aquarium no matter how much you feed the fish. The water is not allowed to get stagnate and is kept moving with a small pump to put in oxygen that is needed to keep plant roots and fish alive.

On all accounts Aquaponics is a better way to grow food domestically because this is a closed system and you have no losses to nature. Farmers currently have problems with heavy rain fall washing away fertilizer before plants can take advantage or in the dry season. They are not sure how much fertilizer to use because when it is dry the fertilizer doesn’t spread out enough creating hot spots which kill plants if new fertilizer is applied and the old one is not used up. The surrounding earth absorbs the water you put to your plants making very large water bills Aquaponics takes away all that guess work. And fish don’t need as much time and care as conventional pets. No taking for walks or washing down pens. Fish are also silent and don’t smell, they really are the least socially disruptive animal that can be domesticated and this is only made possible with recent advances in cheap plastics and low energy water pumps. This is probably why our culture never kept any tilapia even though we have advantages in our rain fall patterns because in the dry season we get enough rain to sustain the small needs of an Aquaponics system. We also have the constant temperature needed for optimal fish growth. This means Aquaponics should be a permanent fixture in your household income revenue stream the modern equivalent to a kitchen garden.

The science behind a well designed Aquaponics system is enough to fill 20 text books but luckily it is a natural living system and gives us clear signs as to how its working, just like how the weather changes before it rains if you know the signs you can maintain your system with the ease of leaving home with a umbrella. Anyone can keep fish alive long enough until the inconvenience of cleaning the tank outways the usefulness of having the aquarium. With Aquaponics the aquarium becomes self cleaning. So the question is not if you have the knowledge to operate an Aquaponics system, the question becomes if you have the time to learn the sign of the Aquaponics system. Knowing that a well designed Aquaponics system is basically a self cleaning aquarium means your time will be most efficiently spent in the design phase. A poor design will cost you much more time and money in maintenance.

The internet has all you need to know but for practical local knowledge, it is better to learn from someone locally familiar with the process. It helps to visualize the cost involved in the maintenance of an Aquaponics system by comparing feed consumption to the average 40 pound Akita dog that eats about .75 pounds of dog food every day at average of 200 pounds of dog food every 9 months. An Aquaponics system using the same amount in 9 months will produce 200 lbs of fish to eat and an extra 150 lbs of parsley @ $10 a pound. The cost to run the pump is $2500/9months. Do Aquaponics right and a backyard system could pay for itself in under 2years.

42 thoughts on “Aquaponics Versus the Pet Dog

  1. @Readydone

    Keep sharing your information. We know we are in a bad place when there is more interest in talking politics and religion over matters to do with food and food security. In fact it defines our intelligence.

  2. Food will become important to Bajans when there is none to be had……there is always grass to eat, they will have to learn to acquire that taste.

  3. Well Well, you seem to have forgotten that it is God who provides and not man with his far- reaching -ego brother. And so long as the Anointing is on the small island of Barbados we’ll make it. No,w are you on God’s side or that of the Devil? Do you not know the He can turn it all around? But of course, without Faith it is impossible to grasp such a concept, Doubting Thomas.

  4. @Mark Fenty
    You don’t have to go for Bill gates , you can ask God to move in the minds of the Dlp ministers , but as you may know the God you Dlp lovers have faith in don’t answer You can ask DT when you see him

  5. @ watchman
    I thought the job was beyond intellectual capacity of those members, who constitutes the DLP? If such is the case, then what use does it make to invoke the name of God? A bet of advice though: you ought not short- change Faith and Hope Mr….

  6. Watchman, there you go against riding my jok…. You best leave my alone before I hit ya out of de oval Like my favority Pakistani cricketer, Javed Maindad.. Wasn’t he great…?

  7. I saw Dennis Lillee at Kensington Oval during the 1986- 87 tour to the West Indies. And he was great; saw that famous long distant run….



  9. @ Mark Fenty
    OK mark don’t be so mix up with the time .
    Let me help you with your beloved Dlp history 1961-1971 very good under E W B,
    1971 -1976 some bad ministers entered and at one stage their were minister without pofolios , EWB rally to 1976 and lost.the Blp came in 1976 -1986 and did a great job in this country ,after TA died tthe same Frank Alleyne that is an adviser to this Dlp along with Mc.Clean , and RH Cook up and feed the people hot air and won in 1986 ,EWB die in 1987 and Dlp is a party from HELL since 1987 ,yes the party won in 2008 because DT & LP ,THIEF the policy holders of Clico MONEY and paid for votes, look where it has the people today .

  10. Mark….. it takes a certain mindset to realize that the only animals on the planet who pay for anything is the human animal…..after having been programmed for centuries to believe that man has to be dependent on other man, example, the church, buckingham palace, politicians, presidents, prime ministers etc, etc., the farm filled with humans worldwide will be hardpressed to believe that their very survival was/is meant to materialize out of thin air…of course i am of the opinion that you are now on a pension and spouting whatever because you know where your check is coming from this month……….in saying that, maybe you can educate the uninitiated to the possibilities.

  11. @ Well Well | 10/01/2014 at 5:39 pm |
    “… i am of the opinion that you are now on a pension and spouting whatever because you know where your check is coming from this month……….in saying that, maybe you can educate the uninitiated to the possibilities.”

    That pension cheque or credit is secure only for the time being; that is, for another year or two.
    There will soon be a time in Bim when there will be a toss of the coin to see who gets pay this month. Will it be the workers or the pensioners who are economically dispensable?
    In the eyes of the law workers’ wages are contractual obligations easily enforceable in a court of law and giving the aggrieved workers the inalienable right to recover damages either by way of immediate cash payment or by levying on the goods or assets of the employer and or directors.

    A pensioner’s income from government is an “entitlement” which is solely dependent on the fiscal capacity of the State. Same thing holds true for private sector pensioners. The CLICO affected people can attest to their inability to sue either the CLICO directors or government regulatory agencies for their so-called pension rights.

  12. So who exactly would get involved in agriculture when yuh have options like going to Uwee (free of cost) for 6 years, getting a degree in “cricket philosophy” or “economics for brass bowls” – and then getting a ‘government pick’ that gets you a good salary, a fire-proof (so far) job; and freedom to do as yuh like…? When you like…. and even where you like….?


    Who (apart for Lowdown) after securing a “degree” from Sir Hilary, will work around smelly animals? Sweaty all day? …and all night sometimes?


    Most importantly, even if some brass bowl were to do all these things, – how long would they last when the other lazy-donkey Bajans insists that the produce should be sold at 10 cents per pound? And be packaged like those from the ‘States’?
    …or that they should be free to reap the produce late at night, as they see fit – for sale to the other set of thieving so-and -so brass bowls who are always looking to buy stolen stuff at a bargain…

    ….or when the shiite government decides to set up and subsidize an operation to DIRECTLY compete with your product? …like goat milk?

    We have done everything to belittle and downplay agriculture bout here – not just the government …..ALL of us…

    • There is no leadership Bushie. Let us import because is cheaper. There is no effort to remember good health, the need for food security, a need to utilize the land for the purpose the great designer provided.

  13. Great post Readydone.

    Given Barbados is a sun drenched island Solar energy to provide electricity for the pumps may be viable.

    David the need for food security is critical to Barbados.
    It is ludicrous to depend on other countries to produce your food.

    The laws must also be changed to discourage so called praedial larceny.

    Tiefing crops should be punishable by imprisonment for 10 to 20 years.

    • Hants this ecnomic crisis has provided the opportinity to refocus and reorder national priorities, we are allowing the crisis to go to waste.

  14. In my searchings i come across Arthur lewis and his duel sector reform paper. i belive that was the start of the death of agri-culture am i right in assuming so?

    I know it is all of WE that kill AG but i only interested in the government involvement right now. I trying to tie down the source of the problem from government side, i know BU is the best place to ask for directions.i know one a wanna got the answer, after all, it is politics.

    @ Hants, tiefing crops should not by punishable by 10 20 years that is too much,, i do belive that tiefing crops from a farmer should be treated the same way as if them get tief from the supermarket. eg. if i tief 100lbs from a farmer today no one does anything but if that farmer sells that 100lbs to a supermarket tomorrow and i tief it, now it becomes a crime.

    Is there a reason by law for this? or is it just who ya tiefing from?

  15. @ Hants we have 1000W solar system paid for at pricesmart in december and waiting on delivery we are going to see how much food prodution we can pull from it, (Calorie/whatt)

    For on our farm works on rain water alone, yup a fish farm with no conection to BWA and we now looking to pull some numbers from the systems once the solar system gets here, this is cutting edge stuff……..

  16. Can farm raised fish be fed with another type of food other than dog food? dog food has many different additives and some fish farmers believe that isn’t good for them.

  17. In the beginning I used to use dog or chicken feed.

    Now there is fish feed available on the market and it is cheaper and healthier than most other feeds, and it does not have in oil, the oil found in other animal feed builds up and causes problems in your Aquaponics system. I recomend buying fish feed for your fish.

    The comparason was made to dog food because most readers can relate to buying dog or cat feed. So I was basicly showing you what you could get if you replace your dog with fish .

  18. Barbados has a whopping food import bill in excess of $700 million and Barbadians are being asked for their input to reduce it.

    That is absolute freekin madness.

    Readydone your efforts will benefit Barbados.

  19. Importing $700 million in food is only sustainable in a booming economy but as the country plunges into recession Agriculture must be a priority.

  20. The Min. of Ag. has study upon study catching dust somewhere in Graeme Hall,telling it about the local alternatives to animal feed,advising it on the Scotland district becoming the food basket of Bim,Eco-Agro-Tourism,etc,etc…….you name and copious paper provided by the FAO,IICA,IADB,BANGO,etc,etc, is available to tell you what to do……even on integrated pest management and weed control in order for us to stop polluting our ground water that we imbibe daily……
    When are we going to understand that we know what to do…….we simply lack the ability to do….

  21. @ readydone | 11/01/2014 at 10:26 am |
    ” I just read a spore magazine it says Jamaica will export English potatoes to Barbados in 2016.”

    Don’t worry, ‘readybone”, that is most unlikely to happen. In 2016 , after servicing its overseas debt and paying for oil imports, Bim will have very little forex to pay for imported ‘Irish’ potatoes originally cultivated in South America.

  22. Miller…… give them a really long time (2 years) before they have to choose between the lesser of two evils, pay pension or pay workers, of course PM Stuart will be apologizing all over the place because why??? it would have been badly handled and he did not get the money from parliament, remember we are projecting 2 years ahead, with the understanding that it happened to the drainage workers just yesterday……

  23. What a pity people have taken an interesting article on aquaponics and cluttered it up with political drivel and religious diatribe.
    Congrats on your aquaponics system Readydone. I too am considering doing a small scale aquaponics system at my home, to provide fish and vegetables for my family and close neighbours if quantities permit.
    Keep up the good work!

  24. Foul Bay Boy

    Just wondering if the Pure Beach Resort, for which the much ballyhooed ground breaking ceremony back in 2011 (see video) is up and running at the stunningly beautiful Foul Bay

  25. They’ve got no money, so I do not thing you have to concern yourself about Foul Bay becoming a PURE Beach anytime soon.

    Be grateful you are not one of the unfortunates who have bought into that scheme/scam

The blogmaster dares you to join the discussion.