What do a horse and an aquaponics device have in common? Bear with me through this story to find out. Growing up I wanted all sort of pets: I started of course big. Mom & dad, I want a horse! I’ll ride it and take care of it and comb it’s hair and it doesn’t really matter that we live in a 2 room apartment on the 4th floor, our 10 story building had a wonderful garden with a willow reaching up to the 3rd floor in the middle of it, we can tie the horsey there.
Obviously what does a 4 year old know about animal cruelty, which by the way was not nearly of any concern 30 years ago in the south-eastern Europe. I grew older while the animals turned smaller, in the attempt to negotiate with my parents: the horse turned into a pony, then into a dog, then into a bunny, then into fish. Victory at last!
I remember going with my dad to the market and buying guppys, dry food and aquarium plants to decorate. At home I was the happiest kid, jumping for joy after promising I’ll take care of them and clean their pickle jar every week. Which never happened by the way, cause I wasn’t very serious, so this fell on my parents. Later the fish multiplied, and I was happy that all my mother’s work colleagues wanted to adopt the baby fish (little did I know that the poor creatures were going straight down the drain).
A while ago I came across a project on Kickstarter that reminded me of this part of my childhood – a couple of years ago it was still a prototype raising funds to become scalable but now I see Back to the Roots available to buy. Aquaponics is a system of aquaculture in which the waste produced by farmed fish or other aquatic creatures supplies the nutrients for plants grown hydroponically, which in turn purify the water (Wikipedia).
So aquaponics means that technically there’s no need to clean the aquarium since the waste is used as fertilizer fo the plants above. My question is, does it really clean itself or you still need to periodically roll out your sleerves and scrub the fish poop out? Fortunately on the official website there are at the moment I’m writing over 31 pages of user reviews addressing the most interesting topics and what I really really like about it is that the admin is replying to each and everyone with extensive information, tips and tricks.
The fishtank has a capacity of approximately 11 liters, costs about €91 and the manufacturers include Beta fish in the selling package, however any other aquarium “residents” can be welcome – some people accommodate shrimp, snails and even small water snakes.
Can’t wait for my son to grow big enough to want one!