International Journal of Agriculture and Environmental Research AQUAPONICS: A SUSTAINABLE FISHERY PRODUCTION SYSTEM THAT PROVIDES RESEARCH PROJECTS FOR UNDERGRADUATE FISHERIES STUDENTS
Aquaponics is a closed-loop, recirculating fresh water system in which plants and fish grow together symbiotically. Aquaponics resembles a natural river or lake basin in which fish waste serves as nutrients for the plants, which in turn clean the water for the fish. Tilapia and salad greens or herbs are common fish and plants grown in an aquaponics system. The external inputs to an aquaponics system are fish food, a minimal volume of replacement water, and energy for lighting and heating the
... er. Aquaponics is particularly suited to arid climates because it uses much less water to grow plants than soil-based systems. In fact, the only water that is lost from an aquaponics systems is by evaporation and transpiration from the plants. The relationship between the amount of external energy (fish food plus energy for light and heat) to the output (weight of fish and plants) has not been well quantified for aquaponics units in temperate climates. The need to quantify the relationship between inputs-outputs presents opportunities for research projects for undergraduate fisheries students in environmental Fisheries, aquaculture technique and design and Fisheries economy. Faculty of Fisheries and Marine Science of Universitas Padjadjaran is building a laboratory to conduct aquaponics research. Lessons learned from this research will aid the development of aquaponics in temperate climates but also possibly in tropical regions.