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the expanded shale substrate i have buffers my ph at about 8

yes some of them are, the blood worms are getting eaten, but they havent really figured out where they are coming from yet..they just smell them and find them after a couple of minutes.. i need them to be excited and attack them as soon as they hit the water.. it will probably take a couple of weeks.


no deaths yet, so i feel that any casualties at this point, i cannot blame on stress/travel.

BCP tank is 1.0 ammonia and .25 nitrite this afternoon.. i am going to do a partial water change with the outside aquaponics and add some more substrate

Hybrid tank is .5 ammonia and .25 nitrites. I will not do a water change right now but i will check water again late tonight/early tomorrow and expect i may need to then

While i wasnt expecting cycling problems, this isnt out of the ordinary and having a strategy of how to deal with this without overly stressing the fish or killing them is super important (assuming anyone ever tries to reproduce this experiment)


Last edited by bcotton; 03/10/14 04:53 PM.
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I have been alternating water changes between the two tanks but today i water change in both.. the water chemistry is about the same in both tanks (before water change) , ~.75-1 ammonia and .25 nitrite.

I had my first loss today... a hybrid.. He wasnt completely dead when i saw him but he's an obvious goner... at a glance i dont see any other fish with this ailment but i would be fooling myself to think none of the others have it. The fish that dont start eating something will probably get sick and die like this... Most of the fish are eating blood worms and brine shrimp and the few pellets i sprinkle in seem to get eaten.... but i do have a handful of feed trained red ear so i dont know for sure if the crappie are trying pellets or not.. it's too early to care tbh.




Last edited by bcotton; 03/13/14 01:52 PM.
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Bcotton, is that a fungus? or did your HBC get smashed/injured somehow?

How is your water temp?

RES seem to be more prone to fungal infections when the water temp is below 55 degrees.



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Lots of warm water fish species are more prone to fungus in colder water when they are injured, stressed and not eating. It is not uncommon. Many of the small fish that get this are eaten by larger fish early in the fungal development.

Last edited by Bill Cody; 03/13/14 03:06 PM.

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Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
Lots of warm water fish species are more prone to fungus in colder water when they are injured, stressed and not eating. It is not uncommon. Many of the small fish that get this are eaten by larger fish early in the fungal development.


as always... spot on with my limited experience.. these losses are not uncommon when doing what i am doing. I am not worried and sticking to plan... my thermometer says 62 degrees and this is less than 2 hours after a 70% water change. My house temp is around 70 so the temp isnt exactly bouncing back up, just staying in the low to mid 60's... with water changes every other day the water temp has been staying down.. this is not ideal but i dont expect it is excessively stressful..

i just finished filling my new outdoor grow bed with new substrate and re-arranging my fish tanks... so i now have an empty tank and i am considering lighten-ing the fish load in each indoor tank by 25-30 fish in both tanks and moving the excess to an outdoor tank. This would allow me to focus back on the main objective and stop messing with the water temperature to keep chemistry safe... i dont think the water changes are a big cause of stress but it's not no stress.

on the other hand.. many of the fish are getting less scared of me and some of them seem to understand that when they see me there is a high probability of blood worms spontaneously appearing.

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I think it was just too many little fish for the filtration, but i guess there is some possibility i was going through a mini-cycle.

anyway, Got tired of water changes every day and limiting feed, so i waited for the cold front to come through last sunday... it was short lived because monday was highs back in the 70's.. so then monday put a couple of IBC's inline to my outdoor aquaponics system and moved the crappie outside.

In the move i confirmed now new deaths.. so the picture above is the only death.. they look healthy though emaciate skinny.


The move does make them shy so i am kind of starting over there but i've started feeding blood worms twice a day again.

I'll try to get some good pictures in the next week.
brian

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You obviously didn't have enough biofiltration judging by your readings or your system wasn't mature and fully cycled. Add that to a species that is so sensitive to handling that some haulers won't even handle them until nightfall and you had your work cut out for you. Unfortunately crappie are not as foregiving as tilapia. Been there done that with some crappie that were hauled to me in the same tank as 2 to 3 pound rainbows and browns. Beat to hell and ended up with 99 percent mortality due to massive and acute fungal issues. It didn't help a trout club volunteer dipped a full net of them all at once probably crushing half of them. He grabbed the net before I could say anything.

Although I have an aquaponics system in the summer, I'm a big believer in a dedicated separate biofilter to augment my aquaponics system (mbbr in a blue barrel) using mb3 media that is kept alive 24/7 365 days a year in one of my overwintering systems. This way there are no worries about getting a cycle going again or anoxic zones in a media based aquaponic system.

Interesting thing about shutting down biofiltration and cranking it up again: a PHD down the road that produces hybrid striped bass, said one year he shut down some of his rbc's
and when he cranked them back up he had a hell of a time with morbidity and mortalities. Said he finally realized the heterothrophs had taken up shop in his filters and were outcompeting his autothrophs due to the shutdown stagnant anoxic enviroment that favored the heterothrophs. Since they multiply much more rapidly than the autotrophs he had issues. He told me if I ever shut down a biofilter it's better to sterialize it and start over.

Btw that one fish with it's caudal fin and peduncle area missing was probably already hit by an aeromonas infection first, probably A. Hydrophilia which is known for eating into a fish's flesh. Probably gained access via an injury and stress and the fungus was the secondary invader feeding on the dead material.

Food for thought: the above bacteria is found naturally in the water and the same genus species as the renowned flesh eating bacteria of humans. However just like the fish, people with compromised immune systems are usually the most susceptible that exposedan open wound in the water. That and hospitals with antibiotic resistant bacteria.

Last edited by Cecil Baird1; 03/21/14 01:15 PM.

If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.






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Originally Posted By: Cecil Baird1
Interesting thing about shutting down biofiltration and cranking it up again: a PHD down the road that produces hybrid striped bass, said one year he shut down some of his rbc's
and when he cranked them back up he had a hell of a time with morbidity and mortalities. Said he finally realized the heterothrophs had taken up shop in his filters and were outcompeting his autothrophs due to the shutdown stagnant anoxic enviroment that favored the heterothrophs. Since they multiply much more rapidly than the autotrophs he had issues. He told me if I ever shut down a biofilter it's better to sterilize it and start over.


Biofilters 101 wink
You need to keep them working healthy, otherwise you'll run into trouble.

I'm surprised your PHD didn't pick up on this fundamental requirement.

Your filtration system is the primary Heartbeat.

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Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
With lighting for fish IMO and CB1's experience it is best if low lighting is used. Sometimes it is best to not keep the fish in total darkness but in full moon light brightness for the dark period. Very dim light is good esp at first turn on. Then the light can be increased gradually to a brighter dim. Good luck on this project. A lot of the members are interested in your experiences. Please keep us updated. We will learn together.


If you don't know anything about lighting for the application, it's probably best to go with with your current situation and run with it.

Dimmer switches are going to start at > than 10% with the click. You need some custom circuitry in front of the best ballasts available to start at zero and then you can shove a 0-10V Analog signal to it.

If you require light, which you should, just use incandescent bulbs.

Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
Some have had success getting hesitant fish to first eat artificial by using current to move the food to simulate it as living.


Not a simulation, but a stimulation!
Upwelling currents will keep the feed suspended for a short time to get a natural response to go after whats in front of them. Hopefully you are using high quality stuff for feed training picky fish.

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'Simulate' - to mimic, imitate or represent something; to put on a false appearance of, pretend, also, to act like, look like. Simulation creates a stimulation.

Last edited by Bill Cody; 03/22/14 09:52 AM. Reason: enhanced

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Sorry for the lack of updates. I moved them outside for a couple of months and this weekend i moved them into a new garage "hatchery" aquaponics system. I have been inconsistent with feeding. Sometimes only once day. They have good feed aggression and come to the top when they see me, but most of them have tried pellets and just much prefer the taste of blood worm.

The feed training hasnt been going well. A few will eat pellets. Sometimes i feed only blood worms, sometimes a mix of blood worms and soaked pellets and sometimes only soaked pellets. A few will eat pellets. I believe if started feeding only pellets today, maybe 15-20 hyrbid crappie would avoid starvation and maybe 10 black crappie.

I had only lost 1 of each fish type before this weekend but the rough handling stress of the move i have lost about 12 of each leaving me at about 50 bc and and about 60 hybrid crappie. I have only lost the weak ones that arent eating any pellets and seem to just be bad at getting blood worms.

Some of the crappie are growing a little and obviously more healthy than the others.

My 5 black crappie from last year didnt start eating pellets until i moved the feed trained red ear into the tank so i am considering getting a couple of dozen 2" blue gill to add the the tanks to improve food competition.

It's not happening as fast as i had hoped but i plan to continue to be persistent until i succeed.


This was a feeding from april


A feeding in my new indoor system. They are a little shy they have only been in there for a couple of days


a tour of the indoor system

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The crappie have been indoors in their new 55 gallon barrel tanks for barely a week and they are taking to the commercial feed a lot more readily. I cant say for certain why. Maybe the aeration is moving the pellets enough to trigger their predatory instinct. Maybe the close quarters are increasing the competition improving feed aggression. Either way, this seems like the winning combo.






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Nice thread, I will be watching for updates. Where do you get blood worms?

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Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
'Simulate' - to mimic, imitate or represent something; to put on a false appearance of, pretend, also, to act like, look like. Simulation creates a stimulation.


Hey Bill, I'll give ya that one!

Boy, I haven't been keeping up!

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Originally Posted By: bcotton


The crappie have been indoors in their new 55 gallon barrel tanks for barely a week and they are taking to the commercial feed a lot more readily. I cant say for certain why. Maybe the aeration is moving the pellets enough to trigger their predatory instinct. Maybe the close quarters are increasing the competition improving feed aggression. Either way, this seems like the winning combo.


You are crowding them more and that will help. I'll have to watch the video again, but it looks like you're having fun!

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Crowding definitely makes a difference from my experience with bluegill, yellow perch, and smallmouth bass anyway. Also raising the water temp will make them more hungry.

I presently have 200 tilapia and 100 bluegill fingerlings in an indoor 150 gallon cone bottom tank and they go crazy on feed 5 to 6 times a day. Water temp is 80 F. The bluegill are actually more aggressive feeders probably because they are slightly larger. However the tilapia should catch up and probably pass them at some point.

My outdoor aquaponics is on hold as I accidentally put a couple of holes in my dura-skrim liner in the raft tank. Had to order a special epoxy to patch it.

Last edited by Cecil Baird1; 05/28/14 04:32 PM.

If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.






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Originally Posted By: Cecil Baird1
My outdoor aquaponics is on hold as I accidentally put a couple of holes in my dura-skrim liner in the raft tank. Had to order a special epoxy to patch it.


Really good duct tape, fixes just about everything! grin

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I was tempted to try duct tape but was concerned it would break down under water eventually.


If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.






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duct tape when water is involved, not so much blush
you've made me rething my restocking plans brian.. gonna mix 50/50 yp with crappie (probably throw in a few bg to help feed train)...
maybe a few tilapia to breed some feed as well, since i only had to add some heat in the basement in the deepest part of one of our worst winters to keep the blue's and niles going
and i'll start the small fish off in the single tote system before moving them to the pool (i'm going to try to "fill" it with rosy reds and marmokrebs before transfer)...
i've got i think 5 bg left from my original stocking in 2010, and while they're the smallest in the pool, they are the most aggressive feeders.. that includes a few 3+lb tilapia and a good range of yp from 8" to 14" or so
oh.. and the greenwater.. you're right, my bottles didn't work, but kitty litter buckets worked very well, with a small air stone with very low flow, white buckets worked better than yellow for me

Last edited by keith_rowan; 05/28/14 05:56 PM.
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All you guys need to join us on the Aquaponics Nation website. Lot's of good discussion from people from all over the world.


If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.






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I've decided i will stop using blood worms when i finish the package i have currently opened. It will be by gone the end of the week at which time i will only feed soaked pellets. I feel good that most are eating the pellets anyway. In a month I'll have a good idea of the number of crappie out of the original 130 or so that i was able to feed train because they will be the only fish alive.


mr hello,
i buy the frozen blood worms you find in the fish food freezer at chain pet stores. I use whichever brand is cheapest or on sale at the time, there's a few. Blood worms arent nutritious enough to be an only food source but it's the one thing small enough that they seem to all want to eat. Ive tried frozen krill, dried krill and live meal worms but they are too big. Anything you can get them to eat that you can source in sufficient quantities should work. The blood worms is just really to domesticate them. Get them to trust you, come to the surface when they see you and to compete over the food you throw in.


cecil, i punctured the pond liner on of my wooden grow beds 2 years ago by dropping my power drill bit first into the bottom of it. I had good success patching it with a small swatch of pond liner glued in with pvc cement. Its held for two years now with no leaks. I have used this technique probably a half a dozen time since.. there's a side to one of my grow beds where half the pond liner edge is missing 4x4" cutouts.

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Brian,

What was the liner made up?

This is polyethylene which is allegedly difficult to get something to bind to it.

Here's the liner I bought which is three layers interwoven for strength. It's also white to keep it cool.

http://alliedaqua.com/dura-skrim-r20ww-geosynthetic-liner-for-aquaponics-aquaculture-and-ponds.html


If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.






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Look, all I know about crappies is that they are fun to catch and I don't want them in my hoped-for pond.

However, when I saw the pic of the fungus, I couldn't help but think about what Bob Lusk told me: Salt is deliberately added to the water when transporting live fish because it seems to keep them healthier.

Wonder if deliberately increasing salt content, at least moderately, might have helped?


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Salt definitely helps with hauling by keeping the fish in osmotic balance and stimulating mucous production but once the fungus or bacterial infection gets going it usually too late.


If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.






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Thanks for the info, Cecil! So maybe it would have helped, but only if added before the problems came up. Interesting what a newbie like me can learn here!


7ac 2015 CNBG RES FHM 2016 TP FLMB 2017 NLMB GSH L 2018 TP & 70 HSB PK 2019 TP RBT 2020 TFS TP 25 HSB 250 F1,L,RBT -206 2021 TFS TP GSH L,-312 2022 GSH TP CR TFS RBT -234, 2023 BG TP TFS NLMB, -160




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