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Fish Problems & Diseases

Fish Problems & Diseases

Our Aquaponics fish can be subjected to various difficulties that will cause them to be in a less-than-ideal situation leading to sickness and death. Most fish problems are human induced.

There are not that many diseases your Aquaponics fish can contract. If you buy your fingerlings from a hatchery that can issue a health certificate for the fish, then buy from that hatchery. It is well worth the little extra it may cost to buy fingerlings from a certified source. That way you start off well and provided you have good water quality and loads of aeration, there is a very good chance that your fish will not get sick.

Stress. Fish can easily become stresses by a number of factors. Do everything to keep your fish happy and feeling safe. Stress is detrimental to fish health just as it is for humans and any other animal. Prolonged stress sets the fish up for bad health outcomes.
Stress is identified by,

  • Fish are skittish and easily disturbed.
  • Gasping at the surface.
  • Strange swimming patterns.
  • Loss of interest in feeding.

Stress can be caused by:

  • Poor water quality, pH , excessive nitrate, nitrite, ammonia.
  • Excess of dissolved solids.
  • Low dissolved oxygen. Power outages. Pump failure.
  • Bullying by other fish.
  • Excessive handling by humans.
  • ICH. Sometimes named “white spot”. The scientific name isIchthyophthirius multifilis.

Treat and avoid stress by:

  • Cleaning up the water quality in your system. This may require the cleaning of the filter if you have one fitted to your system.
  • Fit a filter, a simple settlement tank or swirl filter will make a world of difference if the system has visible solids in the water column.
  • Feed at the correct rate. Overfeeding brings on a raft of difficulties.
  • Ensure the system is within parameters for pH, ammonia, nitrite and nitrate. (see our training material for recommended parameters)
  • Add extra, additional aeration from a different source. There cannot be too much dissolved oxygen in the water.
  • If there is an identifiable bully in the tank, remove the offending fish. (maybe to the dinner plate)
  • Reduce the frequency of opening and closing the lid on the tank. Minimise scooping fish out to inspect them. Only do this if really necessary.
  • Once a disease problem is identified, treat early rather than late.

Next newsletter we will deal with another common difficulty for our Aquaponics Fish.
If you can, attend one of my training courses to get detailed information on how to have a very successful Aquaponics system.
Regards Murray.

Posted By Murray Hallam on 21st April 2014

Updated : 12th November 2019 | Words : 428 | Views : 3198 | Comments : 1

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1 Comment


Hi All,
I have a new tote system (1000 L tank) 1 grow bed and 4 lettuce chanels that has been running for 3 weeks now with plants (seedlings) for 2 weeks on seasol. My 20 fingerling jade perch (7 redclaw babies living in the sump) were put in on wed so have been in for 4 days now. The ph is settling down to 6.0 but amonia is 8ppm and Nitrate is 20ppm.
I added 10mls of iron chelate this afternoon which seem to bring the ph down from 7.6 to 6.0
What can I do to bring amonia & nitrate levels down or should i just wait a bit more?
Also do worms in the grow bed help?

EMAIL : [email protected]

Posted By Tim on Saturday 28th September 2019 @ 17:59:03


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Additional Information


Murray Hallam is probably the best-known face in the world-wide Aquaponics movement. Murray is by nature an innovator and in his Research & Development facility has perfected many new methodologies for commercial farm Aquaponic systems.


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