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Tilapia grow out tank
#14083 03/03/06 08:41 AM
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Continued from the other thread Tilapia this year\'s thread It's a little rough looking but seems to be functioning well. It was important that is was a class project. With all the students and faculty around, the biggest problem is keeping everyone from feeding them. The water quality is good so far. You can't really see the fish so they are planning to set up an aquarium nearby for observation.










"The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge." Stephen W. Hawking
Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14084 03/03/06 06:44 PM
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A little tight for trolling?

Did the kids get in to it?


May God bless America and those who have defended her.
Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14085 03/06/06 09:19 AM
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There's a 5HP limit. \:D




"The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge." Stephen W. Hawking
Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14086 03/07/06 08:19 PM
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Ryan--I'm taking the liberty of cutting and pasting your previous good information on this thread for future reference. I'll take it down if you want.

Quote from Ryan Freeze: Haven't posted for awile, here's the update on the tilapia tank: We had several problems. The tank was set up and filled with water to give the chlorine time to dissipate. After setting up the tank (old hopper tank ring)I measured it and calculated that it is only about 700 gallons. We returned the next morning to find the tank half empty. A new liner was donated and the heater was resized and ordered. Only $140 for 2500watt heater, controller, and cables. There were 205v plugs in the roof so we just added a GFCI an plugged it in. When hooking up the heater we accidentally burned a hole in the new liner but we were able to patch it. The water pump they had turned out to be an air pump, 25CFM. I decided to use this for moving water through the filter. The filter was built out of a large trash can. Three 3" holes were drilled in the bottom. 1/4" mesh was used to cover the bottom except for one 3" hole. A 4'with many 1/2" holes drilled in it and a 2-1/2' piece of salvaged plastic pipe were joined at an elbow. The 2 1/2' piece was passed through the bottom of the trash can. The trash can was then set on a couple of concrete blocks, filled with media and topped with filter fabric. 4 airstones connected to the air pump were placed about 2/3 down inside the verical pipe coming through the bottom of the trash can. Works similar to an undergravel filter in an aquarium but rather than pulling the water down through the gravel in the bottom of the tank it lifts it and spills it over the filter fabric before trickling through the bacteria housing pea gravel media. The advantage is that the piece of fabric catches most of the solid waste and it can be easily removed and cleaned as needed. 300 2" to 3" nile tilapia were added on Friday. My newest problem is that these tilapia are 98% female according to the supplier. If this is true, how many males would be needed to promote successful spawning in my pond this summer for bass growth?


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Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14087 03/09/06 09:00 AM
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Thanks Bruce! Also from previous:

I misunderstood, only 1 tank out of 5 was 98% female. Actually 30% are male which is a good ratio for reproduction. Thanks Ponds, for the heads up on ammonia and nitrite levels, they will be checked periodically. I transported the fish in the water they grew in, hopefully bringing a good seed of bacteria with them. Pictures will follow and I start a new thread soon. I'll try to find the instructions for posting pics to the thread.




"The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge." Stephen W. Hawking
Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14088 03/09/06 11:54 AM
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Ryan- keep a bottle of Amquel on hand. I saved all the fish in an aquarium I overloaded once, by checking the ammonia and nitrites and adding amquel to neutralize every eight hours untill the filter could handle the load.


Please no more rain for a month! :|
Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14089 03/09/06 12:53 PM
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We recommend a product for new Koi ponds called Ultimate water conditioner, which takes care of chlorine, heavy metals, ammonia, and nitrite until biofilter gets going. Also reduces stress and contributes to replacing slime coat. Adding un-iodized salt will help.

Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14090 03/10/06 08:16 AM
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Thanks for the tips on water conditioners. Looks like the Amquel is considerably less $$. Is there any advantages of Ultimate Water Conditioner for the extra $$?




"The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge." Stephen W. Hawking
Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14091 03/10/06 10:28 AM
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Have you had any ammonia show up yet? The amquel is available in most large pet shops or the pet place if you need it immediately.


Please no more rain for a month! :|
Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14092 03/30/06 04:30 PM
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Water conditions are acceptable. There is a significant size difference between fish now. They are very hard to catch in a net but some have grown to almost 5" already while most are around 3". I have not tried to sex them yet but I am assuming the larger ones are the males. I did not see any fry yet. These fish are eating machines!




"The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge." Stephen W. Hawking
Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14093 03/30/06 05:18 PM
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Excellent job! Please keep us posted on the results. This is turning into a great experiment for everyone in the northern climates. If you can overwinter tilapia in such huge numbers, everyone could keep a few to help with plant and algae problems (where legal). It will really be interesting to see how long your season above 58-60 degrees will be. Great experiment. I am sorry I was doubtful earlier. I was wrong. \:o Foot in mouth graemlin!


Please no more rain for a month! :|
Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14094 03/31/06 08:36 AM
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This topic is of great interest to me and many friends of mine that share my feelings toward this great fish.

I would like to provide funding (money) to a qualified persons(s) to develop a Tilapia overwintering kit. In return for the funding, I would only ask for some reasonable joint agreements. I have a draft set of requirements that the system should meet.

If anyone is interested in this please send me an e-mail. Thanks.

Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14095 03/31/06 09:23 AM
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ML and other Tilipia preservationists:

What do you think the minimum acceptable number and size of Tilapia to overwinter would be? I realize this would vary depending on the size, number, and (perhaps) existing fish populations of the waters to be restocked in the Spring. So let's try to come up with the number for a "1 acre predominantly BG/LMB pond". That should at least provide a basis for estimation for differently sized or stocked waters.

My goal here is to try to determine the size of overwintering tank which would be needed.


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Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14096 03/31/06 10:07 AM
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Theo,

My requirement, which I am willing to back up with money, is for an incremental system capable of supporting a minimum of 10 pounds of fish but expandable to support up to 100 pounds of fish. My personal target is for 50 pounds of fish right now, but will need more in the future.

The system must be relatively automated. It can rely on well water in copious amounts. It should have a reasonably small footprint and be capable of fitting in tractor sheds, chicken houses, etc. around the farm.

To answer your question on a typical 1 acre system...it would need to support 10 pounds of Tilapia over the winter.

Maybe we should offer a prize for the first successful system?

By the way, I can buy turn key systems all day for $2000...I'm looking for something which is a little more cost effective. There is no question that a market exists for such a product...Tilapia are selling for $10 per pound all over Texas now and most suppliers run out every year. It seems a few folks have finally caught on to the best pond management tool available today...Tilapia.

Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14097 03/31/06 11:32 AM
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If I were going to do it, and I'm not, I think I would pour some concrete tanks and plumb them. Size would be dependent on your goals but it would be expandable by pouring another vat next to it/them. A thermostatically controlled propane water heater should suffice along with something electric for aeration. A heater that assured a level, cool temp could be the real key. If you had several, one could be drained for periodic cleaning.

Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14098 03/31/06 01:19 PM
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Theo - I don't see why someone in your situation couldn't get by with 20-30 2" tilapia in one of those 150 gallon Rubermaid tubs. You could use a filter similar to what Ryan is using above. A good heater is the most important equipment with such a cold sensitive fish. The fish would grow rapidly in the long overwinter and you could experiment with temperatures to see when they start to spawn. If you could have fry ready about the time to release they would quickly populate the pond. Just an idea for a cheap experiment. You could keep some of the fry for the next winter or seine some when the water temperatures start to drop.


Please no more rain for a month! :|
Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14099 03/31/06 03:14 PM
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PFF:

You figured out where I was headed. I am in the process of setting up a Condello Po'Boy RAS (Pat. Pending) for a different project. I thought the Tilapiasts' (my new word for the day) ideas might indicate whether a PBR would suffice for overwintering Tilapia.

I don't know if I would be actually interested in doing this, and would not make such a decision unitl after 1) I have proven I can make a PBR that keep fish alive and 2) we see a little more Northern state Tilapia experiences. Currently, I have had no bad problems with FA. And I still have to buy some Tilapia fillets for experimentation purposes (burp). \:D


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Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14100 04/03/06 12:28 PM
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Tilapia are very forgiving as far as water quality and DO. The most significant factor in overwintering tilapia in colder climates is the cost for heating the water. This cost will vary greatly depending on ambient temperatures where the tank is stored. Heating costs in an 80 degree greenhouse for example will be non existent but running a 2500 watt heater 24 hours per day in an unheated chicken house would cost roughly $165 per month at $.9 per KWh not including energy to run aeration and filtration. The size and cost of the heater will also be directly related to the volume and temperature increase required of water to be heated as well as the efficiency desired.

Without the addition of pure oxygen the standard ratio is 1/2lb of fish per gallon. It is cost effective to size the tank for the amount of fish you plan to raise, not heating more water than needed. If the goal is 10lbs of tilapia, a 20-30 gallon tank with a good filtration/aeration system and properly sized heater will work. A bare bones system of this size could be set up in a heated room for around $200 or less if someone already had some of the components or purchased second hand. As the size of the tank increases the cost per gallon and pounds of fish produced decreases.




"The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge." Stephen W. Hawking
Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14101 04/04/06 03:52 PM
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ML, what is the lowest ambient temperature your proposed tank will be exposed too?




"The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge." Stephen W. Hawking
Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14102 04/04/06 04:23 PM
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Ryan,

It depends....

I have some available space in an old chicken house and also in a tractor shed. Either could be insulated/enclosed for a fish holding tank....and either could be augmented with propane or electric heat.

Our winters are mild in East Texas. Lows below 32 degrees are very rare and even cold nights are always followed by warm days (almost always).

I would consider a green house for this application but would prefer to utilize existing space if possible. Thanks for your interest.

Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14103 04/13/06 02:38 PM
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I dropped off some feed today and man are these things growing!! Most are around 4" and a couple are close to 6". I tried to net out a couple to get some measurements but they were too fast. The filter was reworked by the science teacher a couple of weeks ago. It looks like a hang-on-the-back filter for an aquarium made out of a 2'x3' cheap plastic tub. It works by a waterfall pump lifting water to the top and a PVC drain at the bottom that lets the water fall about a foot back into the tank. It frees up more space in the tank, adds more aeration (still using air pump too)and looks better. The only disadvantage I see is that is uses more power. I forgot the camera today but will take some photos next time.

ML: Why do you prefer the Moz.Tilapia over the Nile?




"The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge." Stephen W. Hawking
Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14104 04/13/06 05:20 PM
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 Quote:
Originally posted by Ryan Freeze:
ML: Why do you prefer the Moz.Tilapia over the Nile?
Ryan,

We don't have a choice in Texas...only legal Tilapia are Mozambique. As I was told, the State wanted to insure that die off happened if at all possible in the winter. Even with Mozambique, however some folks in south Texas have winter survival. I like the winter die off, all things considered...but long for a way to overwinter for re-stocking the next year.

Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14105 04/14/06 12:41 PM
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ML,

I have a question about your forage ponds and cattle. If you have cattle do you fence them out? Problems you have seen? I would think you would not have to fence them out but just checking.

Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14106 04/14/06 03:10 PM
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Texas715,

I have cattle and fence them out of only one pond...the pond we primarily use for producing eating fish. The rationale for that isn't surprising; I think fish taste better without the cows "influence". All other ponds, including the Kids pond with the TGG's are open to the cattle. They don't cause any problems, help keep the vegetation down around the ponds....I don't ever have to worry about mowing around the ponds open to the cows. Some folks say cows will ruin pond dams...one pond has had cows drinking out of it for some 75 years and shows absolutely no damage to the dam, spillways, or banks. Another benefit from cows...never have to fertilize.

Re: Tilapia grow out tank
#14107 04/14/06 04:16 PM
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ML, others have said they believe a sick cow may go to the pond and drown, that's the reason they give for fencing the cows out.
I tend to lean in your rational and fence out only my main fish eating pond. It makes for more work ie mowing the bank and levvy. Previous owner let his cows keep the levvy down and they did a fine job. I am thinking I'll temp fence the levy only and put some goats on it. It's too steep to mow and I am tired of weed eating it, takes a full day and three tanks of weedeater fuel. I've rented the self propelled Dr type mowers and they work, but going up and and down a steep pond bank is some serious work.


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