Aquaponics yields higher quantity and quality produce and requires less water and space than traditional agriculture.
Aquaponics is a sustainable agricultural practice that combines fish cultivation (aquaculture) with vegetable production in a soilless medium (hydroponics) within in a closed-loop re-circulating system. In the system’s aquaculture component, the fish are reared in tanks where they produce organic fertilizer in a process called biofiltration. Naturally occurring bacteria called Nitrosomonas and Nitrobacter convert the excreted waste, rich in ammonia, into nitrites and nitrates, respectively. This nitrate-rich organic fertilizer, then, circulates into the system’s hydroponics component and is absorbed by the plants, thereby purifying the water before it is recirculated to the fish tanks.
Aquaponics & Economic Development
High agricultural production capabilities coupled with income diversification from integrating fish with plant production, establish aquaponics as a promising mechanism for income generation, particularly useful in economically disadvantaged agrarian regions. Additionally, aquaponics is suitable for regions with:
- water scarcity,
- depleted natural fisheries stocks,
- limited arable land,
- water/soil-polluted locations and,
- natural disaster recovery efforts.