Our world’s resources along with our animals are rapidly declining in numbers, and we’re in desperate need of a sustainable food system that everyone can make use of.
Aquaponics is one of the most effective solutions for this problem, because an aquaponics system replicates an existing natural ecosystem.
What Is Aquaponics?
To put it simply, aquaponics involves:
“…the cultivation of fish and plants together in a constructed, recirculating ecosystem utilizing natural bacterial cycles to convert fish waste to plant nutrients.” – Aquaponic Gardening Community
This system is environmentally friendly and provides a natural growing method for food. It combines the most effective elements of aquaculture and hydroponics without having to add chemical fertilizers, remove any water or filtrate.
Essentially, it’s a vast improvement over the hydroponics and aquaculture systems. Find out more about what aquaponics is here.
How Does Aquaponics Provide Sustainable Food?
If you look at the cycle of an aquaponics system, you will see that nothing goes to waste. Every component in the chain is essential for one another to survive and thrive.
The individual processes that make up an aquaponics system and enables it to sustain itself are as follows:
- Cultivation Process – This is the agricultural system where plants and fish are nurtured and grown together, instead of a wild and uncultivated environment where things are separated from each other (eg. Eliminating the aspect of plants being grown independently on lake or pond shores).
- The Ecosystem – An ecosystem is a system that’s made up of a community of organisms interacting with their environment. In the case of aquaponics, this is where plants, fish, worms and bacteria all work with each other to form an ecosystem.
- Ecosystem Recirculation – In this constructed ecosystem, water must be retained and recirculated instead of allowing it to drain off as you would have to in hydroponics. As a result, you use much less water which is better for the environment.
- Converting Fish Wastes To Plant Nutrients – The key mechanism that allows aquaponics to function the way it does, is the nitrifying bacteria that converts the wastes that fishes produce into plant food. Without this conversion process, the fish would simply die by being surrounded in their own waste and the plants would lack nutrients needed to grow.
From this carefully constructed ecosystem in aquaponics, it means that as long as you maintain certain aspects of the system, you’ll get an automated and everlasting system that continues to produce plants and fish without the need of exploitation.
The fact that you can build a low-cost aquaponics system which is simple to run has made this system an attractive one for many people who want to reduce their grocery bill, reduce any negative impact on the environment or eat more healthier among other reasons.
No matter which way you look at it, aquaponics is a unique and sustainable food system which adopts the best attributes from hydroponics and aquaculture, and at the same time, relieves the burdens which exists in those systems.
Given the ecological and economic situation of our planet in modern times, more and more aquaponics seems to be a viable option for the future of food growing, and it’s up to you to adopt this plan and spread the word about aquaponics.
To get the most out of your aquaponics system, I highly recommend the following articles, where you can decide from the highest rated and bestselling products for aquaponics.