Swimming With the Fishes – The Death of My Aquaponics System

Craig with new fish tank - insulated IBC
Here in the Pacific Northwest our climate is not conducive to growing Tilapia, but I wanted to try it anyway. Unfortunately keeping the water temperature warm enough for the fish was not practical in our outdoor system and with the imminent move to the farm in the near future I don’t want to add to my existing system. In hindsight I would have buried our IBC tank to use the thermal mass of the Earth to help regulate the temperature, but these are the things you learn when you do projects like this.

The fish had outgrown their aquariums and needed a new place to live, so my father and I rigged up an IBC tote as their new home. This tank holds 300+ gallons of water and stays about 74 degrees F inside of the garage with a 300watt aquarium heater. It is hooked to the filter of an old swimming pool along with a filter from my aquarium.
Craig's new fish tank
The tank is insulated with 2 rolls of r29 insulation which is held on by cellophane pallet wrap from Home Depot. Thus far the fish seem to be enjoying their new home.

The water is pumped into the blue 55 gallon drum which acts as a sump for the fish waste to settle. The water then travels through the pool filter and back into the tank.

We are currently in the process of modifying the pool filter to allow for better water flow.

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