Top 5 Best Fish for Aquaponics

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Initially, fishes are raised in a particular chamber or a tank, and then water from the fish tank is supplied by pumping to the plants.

Aquaponics is another new term we hear about a lot; lately, it is primarily derived from the blend of two words aquaculture (Growing fish in a recirculating system) and hydroponics (raising plants in water). Hence, Aquaponics is a technique by which a balanced lifelong biological relationship is maintained between aquatic plants and animals.

“An approach, in aquaculture by which the toxic constituents and other waste produced by aquatic creatures and farmed fishes provide the nutrients for plants which are grown hydroponically, which sequentially purify and refines the water.”

The fish plays an incredibly crucial role in the Aquaponics systems. The excretory products of fishes are used as the source of nutrients for the growth of the plants. Yet, we need to consider several factors while specifying the breeds of fishes appropriate for the Aquaponics systems.

The fundamental rules or the factors to be considered entails the temperature, species, cold/warm water, easy availability in the region.

How Aquaponics Works?

Initially, fishes are raised in a particular chamber or a tank, and then water from the fish tank is supplied by pumping to the plants.

Simultaneously, the bacteria works by converting the ammonia and nitrite present into nitrate. At the end of the cycle, the plants absorb all the essential nutrients from the water.

Later the filtered water is returned to the fish tank. Hence the biological balance is maintained by mutual benefits.

What Are the Advantages of Aquaponics? 

  • 1. It saves an incredible amount of space.
  • 2. It has a high crop yield, and little to no amount of waste is produced.
  • 3. Only fish fertilizers are employed, and no pesticides or herbicides are involved.
  • 4. It is highly sustainable and uses low energy. 
  • 5. There is no occurrence of any soil-borne diseases or the growth of weeds.
  • 6. It works exceptionally well in areas with drought or places with poor soil quality.

List Of The Best Fish For Aquaponics

Here is a list of a few fish that are primarily used in Aquaponics systems. An extensive differentiation is provided based on their availability, temperature requirement, and legality.

1. Perch

Ideally, an appropriate temperature requirement for perch ranges between 70- 82 degrees Fahrenheit. They ideally grow the best in warm water, yet they can withstand water temperatures over 50 degrees Fahrenheit.

They are adaptable and edible Aquaponics fishes. There are incredibly widespread throughout the world, and famous varieties of perch such as yellow, jade, and silver are available easily.

Yellow perch is most usually used in Aquaponics. They can also sustain a wide pH range.

2. Catfish

Ideally, an appropriate temperature requirement for catfish ranges between (78-86) degrees Fahrenheit. They grow the best in warm waters and are incredibly sensitive to simultaneous water temperature alterations.

They are aquaponic fishes that are bottom-feeding in nature. They require a neutral PH range and completely immaculate water conditions.

They are freshwater fishes and mainly live inland or in coastal waters of all continents except icy regions.

3. Tilapia

Tilapia are warm-water fishes and can sustain a temperature range between 65-85 degrees Fahrenheit. The Aquaponics systems are mainly kept at 73 degrees Fahrenheit to accommodate the plants.

Their survival rate is exceptionally high. They can withstand various pH changes and ammonia level change and can dwell on any source of food provided.

Mozambique Tilapia and the Nile are the most preferred varieties because of their high growth rate and breeding rate.

4. Trout

These are cold water fishes, with an ideal temperature requirement ranging between 58–68 degrees Fahrenheit. They can survive properly in cold-weather regions.

Rainbow Trout is the most preferred species of Trout for the Aquaponics system. They can’t live in dirty water conditions. They are a common Aquaponics species to be grown in backyards, garages, or basements.

They are usually not available in the warmer climate regions because of their natural sense to survive in the cold-weather areas. 

5. Bass

Their ideal water temperature requirement ranges between 75-85 degrees Fahrenheit. They ideally develop in warm waters.

They are not comparatively very adaptable like most of the other Aquaponics species. Yet, they can tolerate low water temperatures.

Largemouth, smallmouth, and Striped bass are the primary varieties of this particular fish. Hybrid striped bass is incredibly appropriate for Aquaponics systems as they can withstand significant temperature alteration.


For Aquaponics systems, the selection of fish is incredibly essential. Furthermore, some other factors play a vital role: the pH of the water, oxygen availability, purity of the water, etc. 

Raising plants in an Aquaponics system is an incredibly efficient approach to support organic farming.

In Aquaponics, we establish an environment wholly symbiotic and based on mutual benefits, where both the plants and fish profit from each other. There is minimal wastage of resources using this approach of Aquaponics systems. 

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