Choosing a fish tank
The fish tank represents the aquaculture segment of your system. Safety, strength and durability is what you should aim for. If you are planning to set up the system outside, you should take into account factors like heat, sunlight, rain or other weather factors.
The most popular tank is the one that has a circular design. This is due to the fact that it is considered the strongest. Furthermore, it allows water to circulate easily. If the water flows perfectly, your fish will be determined to go against the current, which will improve their health. Also, the water gets more oxygen which will keep your fish happy. Anyway, on the market you can find square or rectangular tanks, which can be built at home or obtained by using an IBC barrel.
Another thing you should consider when choosing a fish tank should be the material. It needs to be opaque, UV resistant and act like a barrier between your fish and direct sunlight. If you want to place the system outside, you can construct it from materials like concrete or other pond materials. Ponds are a bit harder to take care of due to the fact that it can encourage bacteria growth or other diseases which may turn out harmful for your fish population.
The size is also important because in relation to that you get to choose the amount of fish and flora you place inside. Overcrowding the water with fish and plants will only harm your system. The goal is to create a balance that your fish will enjoy living in. Adding up, the dimension of your growing beds should be proportional to that of your fish tank. There is no need to use a huge tank, if you are planning to use only 2 or 3 growing beds.
Bottom line, choosing a fish tank is an important step in setting up an aquaponic system. Location, external or internal conditions and size represent the things you should take care of. You can choose from many options, but you should pick one based on your needs. You should aim for creating a balance between your plants, fish, water and grow beds.