The Cincinnati Zoo is using sustainable farming methods in an effort to be much less depending on outdoors sources to provide meals for Zoo animals. Along with rising meals for animals on the Zoo’s Bowyer Farm, we’re additionally excited to start out rising meals for animals proper right here on the Zoo with our Aquaponics greenhouse!
Aquaponics is a closed-loop agricultural system through which fish are raised in a tank. Water from the fish tank is repeatedly pumped as much as a bio-reactor, which is a flowery phrase for a small filtration system that primarily homes micro organism; that micro organism converts ammonia from the fish waste into types of vitamins for crops; water exits the bio-reactor and is dispersed by means of trays housing crops, which take up the vitamins. The water then falls again into the fish tanks so clear that it makes for completely happy, wholesome, hungry fish. We feed the fish and thereby hold the entire cycle going.
Check batches from the flood and ebb system have been producing harvests for the previous couple of weeks! Proper now the manufacturing numbers are nonetheless small, however we’re engaged on scaling them up. We’re at present seeing between 6-10 cups of lettuce and 2-3 cups of dill per week proper now, and hopefully, quickly we’ll have extra. Our group is engaged on including another crops into the rotation quickly as properly.
To date, Reptile Home and Training Animal Ambassadors have been getting small take a look at batches. Looks like the animals approve!
Visitors can see the Aquaponics greenhouse on the deck of Base Camp Cafe. The Zoo aquatics group remains to be figuring out some particulars and getting the techniques working totally, nevertheless it’s getting there. Maintain a watch out for progress!