Category Archives: Aquaculture

Water Plants and the Nitrogen Cycle

Water Plants and the Nitrogen Cycle Why do my fish get sick and die?   Your koi pond (or any recirculating water environment) is a closed system; water stays there.  Fish constantly feed and emit waste products in the form of ammonia nitrogen, or NH4.  This makes the water progressively unfit for fish health. The Nitrogen Cycle  The biological event that cleans up the waste is called The Nitrogen Cycle.  Beneficial bacteria in your pond constantly convert NH4 (ammonia, toxic) to […]

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Just like netting the ponds back home (Fishing in Zambia)

  Today’s blog was written by our son, Matt Young, a Peace Corps volunteer in Zambia. Last Friday and Saturday I helped my counterpart Sebastian harvest several of his ponds. Together with four of his sons we seined eight ponds, grading and restocking over 500 fish in order to update existing create new inventory records. (It might not look like it from the pictures, but yes, I did actually go into the water and do work when I wasn’t pulling camera duty). […]

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Pond polyculture

  The fish ponds at J and J Aquafarms are a polyculture of organisms that utilize all levels of the aquatic food chain. It starts with algae which we seed and fertilize at the beginning of every pond cycle. Insects, mollusks, and crustaceans thrive on the rich green soup. Small forage fish eat the insects and snails. Large fish such as bass and catfish consume small fish and crustaceans. In the background, planktonic algae feed on the waste products of […]

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Aquatic plants

  Our ponds provide the perfect growing environment for aquatic plants.  Fish waste is broken down by pond microorganisms into nitrates, the key ingredient in plant fertilizer.  A fish pond without plants will, by default, grow noxious filamentous algae. This is a fish farmer’s worse nightmare because it makes it impossible to net a pond. We grow water hyacinths, sacred lotus, bog plants and a dozen varieties of water lilies. The harvest is from March until July, and the plants […]

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