Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Decreased Hematocrit And Hemoglobin In Cad

36. Aquaponics (2): The system used in the reef aquarium

A marine biotope "NO CHANGE OF WATER?

research looking for the best quality recreated ecosystems. All indications are that we find natural solutions and forget about experiments like the one pictured

We all are fascinated by tanks that maintain reef biotopes. Marine systems are of great beauty of the colorful species can be made. And not just talking about fish, but all kinds of organisms that surprise the viewer with vivid colors. Since the establishment of the Berlin method, based on the biofiltration of live rock and skimmers work equipment (skimmers), these tanks were made more accessible for the best ease of care.

amazing aquarium with coral reef biotope © Luis Pacas

But one of the main drawbacks of attending this biotope is the maintenance of its water. As with any artificial ecosystem in a closed aquatic environment, the compounds produced by living organisms is accumulating and it is therefore necessary water changes. The fewer liters has a tank, and further changes should be made more tedious work is done. If there is no such release of water, nutrients accumulate the unwanted bacteria and algae explosion that ultimately destabilize the balance of the aquarium, producing finally the death of marine organisms.

miniatures of marine fungi © Luis Pacas

precisely the coral reef biotopes in nature have a water scarce or almost no nutrients. This should be replicated in the aquarium.

a reef aquarium

Water is the living environment of the aquarium

A good solution is to collect water directly from the sea, but it is a risk because it is becoming increasingly polluted and know what kind of chemical and organic we introduce into the aquarium. In this case, the ideal would be to collect water from the High Seas

The most effective is to make artificial seawater. Nor is it advisable to use tap water directly without passing current treatment (osmosis), because although it is not harmful for human consumption may contain nutrients that promote algae growth. This water is usually rich in phosphates, silica, toxic metals (particularly copper) and an endless number of different compounds. A safe bet is to use water purified by reverse osmosis and deionization filtered (softened popularly known through special chemical resins to absorb unwanted components of the water).

The marine aquarium enthusiasts themselves decide finally produced water for their tanks © Luis Burbano

Anyone who decides to keep a marine aquarium should learn to make their own sea water . Usually in specialty shops explain how. With just over two cups of seawater prepared to get about 29 liters (it is appropriate to use fresh water purified as described above). These preparations consist of dried salts are packed and sealed to prevent moisture from (and are retained indefinitely.)

Once we have prepared our synthetic seawater have to be always consistent with the same process and elements, as it always is accurate depends on pH and specific gravity. Contrary to what many people think, this water can be stored without problems in a clean container, a bottle or bucket, provided that they close tightly, and store in a cool dark place (a basement or garage). So we have our water reserves indefinitely because it is not corrupted.

The stagnant water of an ecosystem undergoes artificial nitrogen cycle Ant © Graphic José Cabello

Within aquarium care reef (and all the tanks, including freshwater) is precisely the fact of the changes of water. The main reason is that nitrates accumulate in a growing and persistent. Each aquarium is different about the pace at which it is produced and accumulated nitrate. Measurements of water parameters will help us know the status of the tank (ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH, alkalinity, copper, calcium, iodine ...). Typically, 20% plan changes from one to four times a month and 50% from six to two times a year.

Many aquariums have been ruined by not making appropriate changes to do with water or excessive space in time. Just the biotope reef requires very clean water, or what is equally poor in nutrients. So in nature.

The accumulation of nutrients results in a significant decline in water quality. If we do nothing to reverse the process, the water conditions deteriorated to an unbearable point for most of the bodies sufir the consequences. © Luis Burbano

In a closed environment like an aquarium, even in the best case, nutrients begin to accumulate in excess from the moment you enter their living. Nitrogen, phosphorus and organic carbon already in the biomass and not dissolved in water. Therefore, this accumulation of compounds resulting in a considerable decline in water quality in the tank.

in recent years have made great strides in maintaining a reef aquarium. Among those great allies we have the same rock (biological filter bacteria), appliances or protein skimmers skimmers (works with beneficial bacteria live rock and help maintain a low concentration of dissolved organic matter), and drain or sump (another usually smaller tank that can contain macro algae to help also in the decline of nitrates).

Live rock, the protein skimmer and the sump, in addition to periodic changes of water, help maintain water quality aquarium inhabitants Thank © BIMBOA

Some aquarists decide to replace the aquarium substrate plastic sheets to avoid the accumulation of waste. For this reason also recommended a low number of animals, particularly fish, for his excretions also add this constant increase of components (biological load of other organisms such as invertebrates is much lower). Also care must be taken with food, leftovers increase considerably because the chemicals in the water.

This photo shows clearly the composition of the exposure tank (top) and drain tank or sump (bottom) © BIMBOA

Anyone who looks after an aquarium knows that war is continuing against components that accumulate in the water. Is the tedious part in the maintenance of an aquarium.

Hence the great importance of acuapónico system applied in aquariums and in particular, on the reef. Plants following the procedure hydroponics, without requiring other nutritional elements, complete with the accumulation of these undesirable elements of the aquarium, purifying water as a natural filter. To date, as discussed an innovative technique, little information exists on their effectiveness but promises to be a real solution (or revolution?). On a commercial level, with real hydroponics and fish farms has meant a real breakthrough unprecedented. Who does not want an autonomous way of avoiding many tedious and water changes?

nano reef in this fantastic we can see the sump built into the rear, which also could implement a system acuapónico plants with the advantage of being illuminated with the same screen

This You can see a sample, but ineffectively exposed (assuming that the goal of these mangrove stems that are developed in the future to put in a better place). The aquaponics system in lush vegetation requires much more space for water quality

The aquaponics is a clean procedure, eco, sustainable and affordable.


In the previous chapter explained in detail in the aquaponics consisting of a single system that optimizes within the aquarium water through a symbiotic process between fish and plants. The goal is achieve a balance in which plants are nourished with water surplus components, serving as biological filters, and fish (and other agencies of the tank) to produce its biological load (excreta and waste) of these same nutrients for plants. The aquaponics in a marine aquarium means a great advantage that it can be very beneficial to maintaining stable water parameters. Once we find the balance, get a tank with purified water at all times. The right place to insert the plants would be the so-called sump (secondary container of aquarium water.)

visual diagram of the system of a reef aquarium

The sump is an additional tank in the system of a reef aquarium, which is normally kept hidden and used to:

1. Increasing the total volume of water (a few more liters, the easier it is to balance water parameters)
2. Simplify water changes and helps maintain stable water
3. Place aquarium husbandry (all equipment controller as the thermostat, the skimmer and filtration system)
4. keeps the water free of contaminants

There are many forms and types of sumps or drains

For this reason, in a reef tank, the sump is the perfect place to bring a acuapónico it has all the characteristics necessary to maintain hydroponic cultivation of plants, no more maintenance than a photoperiod lighting so they can develop their photosynthetic functions.

The maintenance of these plants would be simple: occasionally prune their branches to take advantage of space and the objective is to absorb excess water, let your roots grow up to look real biological sponges.

Normally the sump and is used also to add a system to help purify water, which for acuapónico system may be the most interesting site


The role of plants in filtering search aquaponic components that accumulate in the tank, thus purifying the water. In this case we find plants resistant to sea water. We emphasize that this technique is not new (although under the acuapónicos distant concepts) as long macro algae are used in many shelters (Sump) that absorb both phosphates, nitrates and other organic components that focus on water. We refer to the Chaetomorpha, Green Gracillara , Caulerpa , etc. It also uses the mangrove .

The macroalga Chaetomorfa is well known for its excellent characteristics as a natural filter

The plant under hydroponics aquaponics has demonstrated a much higher absorption capacity, with a great performance in water purification capacity, resulting in a natural method very suitable for aquariums.

1. Mangrove

On the coasts, mangroves purifies water naturally, which is why his disappearance is an ecological disaster

The or mangrove and mangrove employed as a method to absorb nutrients from the marine aquarium water. In fact, specialist shops can be found as the red mangrove plant intended as a natural means for the reduction of nitrates, either both fresh and marine aquariums. Its spread is very simple, because the young shoots of mature branches should be removed with an oblique cut and clean. By letting the biased submerged in water (a cup) develops early roots of the future tree. It is interesting to know that this moment is important, because as the water is fresh or sea, and their expertise will be determined definitively.

red mangrove seedlings for sale! Its price does not exceed 10 €

The mangroves have the ability to absorb (almost vacuum) nitrates, phosphates, organic compounds and other elements in the removal of salt water. Some experts compare the beneficial role of protein skimmers (skimmers). Of Indeed, they say that when using these plants to grow to enhance their power, skimmers do not clean anything and there are plenty full. The downside is that when small, are slow to grow and its cleansing power is very limited.

specialty shops can be found in the red mangrove With

mangroves is important to pay attention to the falling leaves, as if allowed to decay in the aquarium are to a source of nutrients harmful to the aquarium (what we want to avoid.)

The mangroves can be planted in discovered an aquarium or in the shelter (sump). It is also advisable to place it in the sump, with the roots suspended in water to prevent entry into the substrate or the complex movement of water (plumbing pipes from the tank). The reason is always monitor their development, because growing up with a large force capable of breaking pipes, rock and even the aquarium glass.

Example mangrove tank DrPez exhibition © Revista1024 by Anthony Calfo

Example of a mangrove plantation on a sump © Johanna

A data to note is that all those fans who have chosen to maintain mangroves that have grown well in your aquarium, speak wonders for their effective performance in the powerful water purification.

Taking precaution, the mangrove is a plant candidate who follows the principles of aquaponics. Their slow metabolism makes them slow-growing plants, which prevents its effectiveness is absolute

2. Salicornia

Salicornia directly using hydroponics seawater
The Salicornia belongs to the family of halophytes, in particular the type of euhalófitas that grows optimally in salt water or soil containing a high level of salt.

These plants have a regulatory system that may exclude or excrete salt store. Exclusion takes place in the roots, where salt is simply not supported within the vascular wise. This may be involved in pumping out the salt using an ultrafiltration mechanism.

a very crucial detail to use aquaponics systems Salicornia marine aquarium is its rapid growth and its ability to form large root ball

Halophytes (that bring salicornias) are highly efficient photosynthetic real converters, and they have to, because they require energy, pump, filter, sort, and excrete salt. Hold up well in the water salinity of 30000 - 40000 ppm.

Halophytes grow in soils with high salinity, the salinity is usually dominated by sodium chloride (NaCl), the waters of lakes that composition can differ greatly. This is important for plants. Adaptation to NaCl is apparently easier than adapting to MgCl3, NaHCO3.

The Salicornia responds well to irrigation continued as it always stays green and fleshy. It is very tough and is grateful for the pruning, the desired shape can

Soil texture is also important. In the seaside additional force is required in plants due to movement of the area by the waves. Fine sediment of mud in the sea can hold water longer than sandy soils. The chemical composition of the solid particles is also important, the sand of the seashore may consist of more than 90% of broken shells and other structures animals. This is mostly CaCO3. In contrast, in sand dunes consist mainly of SiO2 and other earth materials.

EcoReach The ERSCHG or under the help of Unesco, investigates how the natural ecological system to filter the Salicornia. In the 2 previous images can be seen from these experiments

© EcoReach
Halophytes have the ability to absorb a large influx of heavy metals and large organic molecules with which purify the water quality. In this section, the EcoReach (Ecohydrolology and Restoration of Coastal and Stuarine Habitats Group) sponsored by Unesco , is investigating the filtering characteristics of Salicornia to coastal ecosystems, with promising results. In their experiments in phytoremediation technologies for improving water quality, are testing the role of Salicornia to verify the improvement of water quality and the considerable decrease of sediment.

The Salicornia Sea or asparagus can look round or elongated with dense foliage

Due to the interest offered by the Salicornia for marine aquarium and there being no specific documentation for this goal, the Marine Aquarium Club has opened a research forum involving several volunteers to collect information and verify information. From here we invite all those interested to join this group, it is open and seeks to improve the conditions of this type of aquarium.

are several factors that make the Salicornia first in a new way to filter the aquarium water biologically ocean, it is fast growing (which necessarily means that nutrients absorbed very quickly), perennial, can be pruned easily (pinching the tips) to give a rounded shape saving space and has the power to produce large root ball of fine roots (which are to be encouraged to mimic real biological sponges).

's funny to think that the remains of pruning can be edible for the owner of an aquarium. Among other benefits, Sea Asparagus is a potent blood depurante and low body fat mass (the Lambs ate 50% grassland reduced their cholesterol by high content of linolenic acid). Nutritionally it contains 14% protein, calcium, magnesium, potassium, sodium and 40% of essential fatty acids omega 6.

3. Maritime Suadea

plant Another candidate for Aquaponics: the Maritime Suadea

is another plant that can also adapt to saline media. Applicant is also a great nitrate and always likes moist substrates weakly acidic with a pH of 4.5 to 7.5. Behavior is unknown in cultivation.

This image can be seen that Suadea also produces a large amount of fine roots

4. Spartina anglica

Spartina Anglica The shows great strength when considered blight on the beaches and coastal areas. In the second snapshot in the foreground is seen Salicornia

This plant is considered a competitor of the Salicornia in coastal habitats. In fact we are dealing with an invasive species that reproduces very rapidly in many parts of the world. Behavior is unknown in cultivation.

Resembling a reed, the Spartina height is high and can live on substrates immersed in water marine

5. Maritime Puccinella

This is a sea grass that creates great sheets of vegetation on the coastal beaches. Behavior is unknown in cultivation.


Normally the sump or refuge is located on the bottom of the aquarium displays. In most cases it is hidden so if you have a hydroponics system, we must adapt to space.

illustrated in this scheme describes the layout of what would culture in a sump acuapónico © José Ant Hair

1. Being a hidden place, we apply artificial light (as is done for those sump containing some kind of seaweed filter). But hydroponics lighting concepts are completely different from those applied for aquariums. The light should help the smooth operation of the plants growing in hydroponics. These plants should be combined blue and red light. Then, devoting an entire paragraph explaining this form of lighting.

Light is customary in the sump when keeping a macroalga. Although as we shall see in hydroponic culture using blue light mixed with red, white light 5500 ° K daylight to 6500 ° K may also be appropriate because it meets in its spectral composition all the colors of the rainbow. The plants take advantage of colors that need

2. Hydroponics are completely submerged or partially suspended in the water. The bottom line is that the roots of the plants are always in direct contact with water, either completely or end zone. In the aquarium to have continuous water movement, sound and oxygen, avoiding the typical organic decomposition (which happens with standing water) from the roots to be exposed continuously to water.

This diagram shows the placement of the plant in the pot. Phase 1 represents the level of water to touch the plant while it is small and phase 2 when the plant has grown © José Ant Hair

3. For better control of the plants growing under the hydroponic system, it is advisable to introduce them in small plastic pots or scaffold grand opening of holes, so that the roots can break through freely in the aquatic environment.

pots best are those that have openings for roots to break through freely

4. Among the advantages of aquaponics is that the water maintains adequate levels to appreciate the plants: a constant warm temperature (24-27 º C), which stimulates root growth. Our goal is to develop as much as possible to become a dense ball of fibers that facilitate the absorption of nutrients. These qualities of water to revitalize hydroponics also adds the stability of pH and specific gravity.

5. is advisable to use plants whose branches to prune or pinch, to give them a form adapted to the available space. The nutrients are metabolized and converted into vegetable fiber. For this reason, as with bonsai techniques, the plant should be pruned to control growth and branching (as opposed to the roots).

The aquarium water is all the requirements for a lush plant (temperature, nutritional compounds, etc.)

6. These crops require no substrate, it seeks to nurture hydroponics plants only with water. Thus, no substrate is required to add their own sump. In placing the pots have thick gravel from the sea.

For plants such as Salicornia , sea gravel is best

7. With these premises we have our culture acuapónico ocean at full capacity. Now, with precise measurements of water parameters, we get the right balance. This means going adding plants (the more fit us better, because the idea is to err on the side and not by default to remove rather than
relocate if necessary). To get correct data, we have to wait about 3-4 months and the results accurate. Just add or remove plants.

With Sump favorable conditions can be maintained without problems acuapónico culture

8. crops achieved commercial production acuapónicos ecological sustainability of the ecosystem, ie the perfect biological balance. The final objective is to avoid aquariums with a natural purifier, the water changes due to accumulation of all sorts of components and above all, molecules organic.

The objective is to adapt the sump as acuapónico container. In the picture you can see a standard hydroponics system in fact differs little from the proposed sump hydroponics. Necessary to analyze the extent to which light affects the roots, always hidden in nature


Many studies have been done on the light in crops hydroponics. Here we offer a complete summary of the best light that we apply to plants that will be useful for aquarium aquaponics.

A sump generously lit inside

is important to note, according to the scientific understanding that objects have the color that do not absorb. In this case, plants to be green does not absorb green light. For this reason, ignored this color from light to light because plants do not take advantage.

This hydroponic tomatoes using white light. In our e-magazine AquaFlash we domumentado that sunlight at its zenith is pure white, with just the 5500 offering ° K. Is where the plants grow better. In these hydroponics are looking for maximum performance, so it resorts to the blue and red light accelerates metabolimo vegetables. Perhaps this idea is appropriate in Aquaponics , because when a plant grow faster, the more nutrients you need, so that water will absober which is our ultimate purpose

because plants are sensitive to light two specific colors: the red and blue light (oddly the two ends of the visible colors that make up the rainbow).

The plants have a photoreceptor for red light. It is a bluish green pigment called phytochrome which has been in the cells plant. Phytochrome can be compared with a visionary eye that only red light.

red light influences in different ways in plants. Those that are grown with plenty of this color is generously developed, but elongated and spindly (spiked). The red light also enhances flowering and seed production.

Blue light also perceived by plants. The color of this photoreceptor called cryptochrome. Plants increase your metabolism with this color, which, growing demand and nutrient absorption. Consequently, this makes them grow and develop more quickly, but thick in a sense that they fall short in height and narrow branches.

An inexpensive and full of advantages to hydroponics is to illuminate the LEDs. For just over € 30 you can buy these screens ( Hydroponic Lamp 225 LED Grow light Panel Red Blue 110 V ) of 225 red and blue LEDs to 50%

conclusion, in hydroponics is used to separate or simultaneous combination of the red and blue light. There is also the option of resorting to the pure white light.

This light is vital, as it provides the energy required for photosynthesis of a plant with artificial lighting in a hydroponic culture. In aquaponics with aquariums that maintain ecosystems, part of the lighting, the water is stable at a warm temperature that stimulates root growth.

NOTE: The marine aquarium aquaponics is an innovative technique. In this article we offer in detail the bases for this method, still in experimental stage. The advantages are so great that foster a revolution in the care and maintenance of reef aquariums.

The dream of every fan of the aquarium is an aquarium always keep healthy, will the Aquaponics one more step to get it?

After performing the previous article, before the great flood of inquiries, requests and suggestions we decided to make this second complementary, specifically dedicated to these fascinating aquarium. The Salicornia opens a new light with this promising method, which we affectionately named "Mexico" there being a plant known since antiquity. Remarkable is that from the Marine Aquarium Club has organized a volunteer research group to implement the detailed testing of Salicornia. The Marine Aquarium Club , service-oriented international coincidentally is based in Mexico.
06/22/2009: The portal e-coralia also adds to research on Salicornia, with the European line aquaponic experimental reef aquarium. The purpose is that if the results are as expected, since two lines of research, we share an innovative extendable to the common good, in particular the marine aquarium.

Salicornia seeds

Salicornia The object of study and research in the CAM for relevance in reef aquariums. When there is a serious and detailed information will be published a document which we will echo, as also part of this team, comprising members as ARKO, colofox, pepecarranza75, geomx, JMJMIKE, karlostorm, Victor Carpio, LordRiper, luigui, Johanna and everyone as they join (as is the case of E-CORALIA portal )


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