Across the globe, aquaculture is a BIG business. From farming aquatic animals like fishes, shrimps, prawns, crabs or turtles to aquatic plants and weeds like spirulina, duckweeds, seaweeds, phytoplanktons and so on. But largely people are into this business without understanding the basics of water.
Whenever a dense farming is done, be it agriculture, horticulture, floriculture, apiculture or animal husbandry (including fishery, poultry, dairy, goatry, piggery, duckery etc.) or any other kind of animal farm – the key challenge remains diseases, health, sanitation, hygiene and nutrition. But things change in case of aquaculture, because people focus on the health of the organism, but key factor that should be focused upon is the water health.
To culture is to grow, and aqua means water. So technically aquaculture would means to focus upon the growth “of or from” water. And this is what people neglect in order to make money. Fishes or prawns getting sick is just a symptoms to show that water is not healthy, but most of the aqua-culturists don’t even relate to this concept.
Be it Re-circulatory Aquaculture System (RAS) or Biofloc or aqua-mimicry – all are basically on the quest to create a sustainable system for farming aquatic life, but they fail just because they are neglecting the core, which is water.
Key challenges in aqua-culture
Form the aqua farming perspective, there are certain key issues to be addressed for keeping the farm profitable, healthy, keeping the production high, and protecting the farm from diseases. It is important to note that there are some chain reaction also that happen, which result in related issues. So let’s understand the key challenges first, before proceeding further;
1- Dissolved Oxygen (DO) levels in water – The entire aqua life form is dependent upon the right level of dissolved oxygen. If this level goes down, the entire aquatic ecosystem collapses.
2- Right food, for right health – Usually, people add feed (made out of rice bran & powdered soybean in water externally to meet the needs of the growing fishes / aquatic animals. Then there are many synthetic foods (made in factories) for specific needs like vitamins and minerals, growth promoters, toxin control, acidifiers, antioxidants, specialty products like Eubiotic Feed Supplement, protein based gel feed supplement, Feed Supplement for Calcium, Phosphorus, Folic Acid and Biotin etc. The problem here is to understand the amount of feed required to strike a balance between too much and too less. If the added food is too much, it settles down to the bottom of the waterbody and the biological decomposition will start that would start consuming the dissolved oxygen levels. This decaying food will add phosphates to water. However, if the food added is not enough, it would cause the livestock to starvation, which again results into bad health and therefore poor price for the produce. Also with lack of food the immune system of the animal would go weak and it becomes more vulnerable to diseases.
3- Ammonia Level of the water – On one hand, we need bigger population of the livestock, on the other hand a denser population would result into a higher ammonia level, due to excreta of the fishes. An increased ammonia level is again a toxin for the fishes and causes their death.
4- Weeds & BGA – when the phosphates and nitrates are added to the water due to the above activities, nature produces weeds like hyacinth, Blue Green Algae (BGA), Azolla etc. for consuming the extra phosphates and nitrates. But in this process, the weeds will cover the water surface restricting the sun-light and reducing the rate of photosynthesis and therefore oxygen production.
5- Anaerobic bacterial growth – as explained above, the growth of anaerobic bacteria is a death trap for aquatic life forms. Because their metabolism is against the aerobic beings like fishes, shrimps, prawns, crabs or turtles, for these farmed organisms the anaerobic organisms causes diseases. They become pathogens naturally.
Fundamentals of aqua-ecology
Irrespective of the farming method or the expenditure done in farming or even the quality control done, regardless of the feed quality given or the pH value maintained or the number of aerators installed, when you go out in the market, you would get the freshest of the fishes from either river or sea, wherein nobody is doing any control or giving any feed.
Why does this happen?
It is only because the aqua-ecology in a river or sea is alive and living, while in the aquaculture setup of a fishery, water is simply considered H2O or a dead substance that is playing the role of the medium in which farming is being done.
When the water itself is unhealthy, sick, decaying or dormant, how would the organism in water remain healthy? They would obviously be sick, dull and inactive.
Not many people would resonate the truth that “Water is a Living Ecology”. People find the very concept as mystical and transcendental. Most people believe that they know and understand water inside out, its simply H2O. There’s only 1% of the water on earth that is drinkable – so we know everything about water. There is nothing unique about it.
But, most of them don’t even know that all the substance on earth contract and condense in low temperature or absence of heat, but it is only water that expands when condensed, that’s why ice floats above water since it is lighter than water. And that’s just one physical attribute, there are many more to amuse you further. Like water only has a force working against the force of gravity, called the buoyant force.
Many people would be amused by the fact that water has memory, now this is where the mysticism starts. The more you try to understand water the more mystical it would get. That’s where modern science meets Vedic scriptures. But, there are many seekers and scientists who have done years of research and proven with the modern scientific methodology of hypothesis, research, theory, lab practical and evidences. Some of the major references include the following scientists, you can google about their work and understand more;
- Viktor Schauberger – was an Austrian forest caretaker, naturalist, para-scientist, philosopher, inventor and biomimicry experimenter.
- Dr. Gerald Pollack, University of Washington, professor of bioengineering.
- Masaru Emoto was a Japanese author and entrepreneur who said that human consciousness has an effect on the molecular structure of water.
- Luc Antoine Montagnier is a French virologist and joint recipient with Françoise Barré-Sinoussi and Harald zur Hausen of the 2008 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for his discovery of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
- Jacques Benveniste was a French immunologist, born in Paris. In 1979 he published a well-known paper on the structure of platelet-activating factor and its relationship with histamine. He was head of INSERM’s Unit 200, directed at immunology, allergy and inflammation.
Interestingly all those, rubbishing and rejecting the factual theory ironically, do agree on the basic fact that life began in water on the planet. And even today all living beings have 70-95% of their body mass constituent as water, all plants and animals included. From water, life evolved to become amphibian, then to terrestrial beings and eventually avian, therefore the 1st element of life is to make water alive with all electrolytes, minerals, microbial life and such other natural components.
Healthy water – a mandate for Aquaculture
A water wherein the aqua-ecology is alive will remain healthy, and when water is healthy any organism living in such a water will remain healthy.
Ecology is a large domain in which physics, chemistry and biology are smaller subsets. Physically speaking a healthy Water will always be free flowing or we can say shall have low viscosity, Chemically, it would be having a complete natural electrolyte balance and biologically it would have an active food chain, biochemically speaking this Alive Water will perform photosynthesis.
Now let’s understand how this help aqua-culture business naturally without any extra efforts –
1- Dissolved Oxygen (DO) Factory – All natural Waterbodies do photosynthesis, and this is the source of production for dissolved oxygen. No physical aerators or chemicals are required in a naturally earthen Waterbody for adding oxygen to Water, just if the aqua-ecology is kept alive.
2- Feed for the Aquaculture – A natural earthen Waterbody is linked to the aquifer through soil capillaries through which water keep travelling between surface Waterbody and underground aquifer through the layers of soil and keeps the mineral exchange and mineral cycle on, thereby maintaining the complete electrolyte balance in Water. This balance helps maintaining the metabolic activities and a healthy population of the single celled organisms. These microbes are the food for planktons, which are in turn eaten by fishes & prawns. And the excreta of these complex organisms that are being farmed, is neutralized by the same microbes on a daily basis. This keeps the food chain on, and all organisms keep getting their natural feed, without any human intervention.
3- Ammonia Neutralization – All additives in Water are consumed in the aqua-ecology through the food chain and mineral cycles that happen within the Water. No RAS or biofloc is required for this purpose, if just the aqua-ecology is alive. And when this neutralization is being done regularly, obviously there would be ZERO weeds or BGA or anaerobic growth.
So the key to success in Aquaculture is merely maintaining the natural ecology of a waterbody, we’ve been unnecessarily complicating things and making our lives difficult.
At this juncture, the obvious question would be, how to do it? How is it done? How can it be so simple? And so on.
So the answer is very simple – Cownomics© Technology, The most effective, proven, sustainable and ecological way for keeping ecology alive in Soil, Water & Air.