Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Skippy Filter

Bio Filter
It turns out that if you put fish into a pond it doesn't take a long time for it to become pretty funky. Our fish were sitting at the top of the pond, listless, gulping air. It was pretty much a cesspool.

I did a lot of research online and came across what's known as a "Skippy Filter". Basically you pump water from the pond into a bucket all the way to the bottom. The bucket is full of some sort of media with lots of surface area like lava rock or scouring pads. Near the top there is a hole in the bucket so that the water level stays in the same place. As the water fills the bucket from the bottom up the water is forced through the filtration media and flows out of the overflow hole near the top.

water is forced to the bottom
through the pvc
It's a simple device but very effective. Since I do not have a/c electricity down at the pond I was able to use the dc pump in this instance to good effect. I did need to run the pump at night as well and I had a car battery that I had just taken out of our car and started using that in the evening. Although it won't crank a car any more, it will run the small pump all night long.

On top of the lava rock that I used as the filter media, I put in some expanded clay grow rocks to support some plants. I've got sweet potato, pineapple basil, and a sweet potato that I started indoors now growing in the top of the skippy filter. So far so good.
It isn't pretty with a car battery and a drywall bucket sitting on top of the pond rocks with water pouring out of the side but it's a stopgap measure until I have time to get something more permanent in place. The water is totally clear now the stench is gone and the fish aren't lingering at the top sucking air because their gills are burning with ammonia. The plants in the filter seem to be thriving as well so it's a little bit of an aquaponics system I suppose.

In due course I will add a charge controller to recharge a deep cycle battery that can run the pump 24/7. The pump draw is miniscule so I might be able to run some lighting as well. We'll see.

No comments:

Post a Comment