Many concerned friends have asked me about my 20 baby Tilapia. After I broke the tank and stuffed them in a little 5 gallon aquarium overnight, I received calls and emails, requesting a follow up. So here it is.
The next morning, I cleaned out my blue 55 gallon drum that I use for growing essential microbes in for the garden. I did not waste a drop though. It is being saved in 5 gallon buckets until I am done with the drum.
I put the tilapia, their 5 gallons of rescued cycled water, and bacteria filled rocks into the barrel. I added 5 gallons of clean water, and a bubbler to disturb the surface of the water. The bubbler will cause the oxygen at the service to enter the water.
Instead of changing water everyday now. I just add 5 gallons of clean, unchlorinated water every evening prior to feeding them. It will take these little ones a long time to dirty this large amount of water. After the barrel is filled, I will start taking water samples. When the samples start telling me that the water is dirty, I can start changing the water and cycling my tank.
I have read that a 55 gallon barrel willl support up to 5 full grown tilapia, so it is indeed possible to do this on a smaller scale . One of my students mentioned putting 4 barrels for 20 fish. That would work too.
I hope to have my 130 gallon IBC tote soon. When I do, I will follow up with another post. Until then, these babies are safely tucked in, and playing at the bottom of the barrel. Don’t tell them though! They think that they are “Under the Sea” Ohhhh– Silly Song alert!