A cosy cottage for couples or families to enjoy the farm
Course dates are yet to be confirmed but you can register your interest now by submitting our online enquiry form. As soon as dates are released we will be sure to notify you.
The following is a guide to the course, what topics we’ll cover together and an indication of what you’ll learn as a result. Whilst structured we have built into the course a series of flexible classes that allow you to get the specific information you need to equip you to start your own project.
Day 1 Getting to know the basics and fish
After introductions and a cup of tea the first morning will take you through the basics of aquaponics, it’s history, current status of the industry and the types of system. It will also give you an overview of fish biology and which species you can grown in aquaponics. In the afternoon we will give a full tour of the Humble By Nature Aquaponics Solar Greenhouse (ASG) and delve deeper into fish husbandry and biology including feeding and a dissection practical to give you an insight into what goes on inside a fish.
Day 2 Aquaponic Planting and Maintaining Aquaponics Systems
Again the day will begin in the classroom, getting to grips with plant biology and water quality in aquaponics. In the afternoon we are back in the greenhouse, planting and harvesting the grow beds and learning all you need to know about maintaining the system including a water quality lab session and an overview of good record keeping. We finish the day with time in the greenhouse with a Q&A to allow you to ask all the questions you may have.
Day 3 Troubleshooting
Today’s classroomtime is all about troubleshooting ensuring you know how to spot when somethings wrong and how to respond. This includes: fish health; welfare and diseases; plant pests and diseases; integrated pest/disease management techniques. The afternoon will continue the creepy crawly theme looking at closing the loop of aquaponic production with composting practicals, having a go at making your own fish feeds and learning how this can be done on a semi-commercial basis. We will also look at integrating mushroom production and have a go at inoculating.
By the end of day 3 you will feel comfortable with the biology of aquaponics systems and have the knowledge to successfully operate a system yourself.
Day 4 Commercial aquaponics systems and technology
The final two days will concentrate on the semi-commercial/ commercial side of aquaponics including system design, technology, business planning, marketing and the economics. By the end of this period you should have the knowledge required to go about starting your own aquaponics business. On thursday morning we will get technical and discuss controlled environment aquaponics, monitoring programs and integrating renewable energy technologies to lower input costs. In the afternoon you will learn how to design an aquaponics system from scratch and explore different ways of cooking and preparing fish. The day will culminate with a cooking demo and evening meal created from aquaponic produce.
Day 5 Getting down to business
On the final day we will look at the economics of aquaponics business planning and marketing of produce. You will also learn about all of the relevant legislation and regulations involved in, and licences required for, running an aquaponics business. In the afternoon we will complete the course with an intensive session focussed on discussing your individual projects and ideas.
You’ll be free to leave by around 4-5 o’clock depending on your travel plans but we’ll be available till 6 to answer any remaining questions you may have.
This five-day course will run from 10am - 5pm from Monday to Friday, on Thursday there will be a dinner and social evening.
You will have a mixture of time spent in the classroom with lectures and practical sessions as well as looking at our aquaponics system on the farm.
The course price includes tea or coffee at the start of every day, lunch and afternoon tea. It does not include accommodation, breakfast or your evening meal, except for Thursday night. You can either stay on the farm or our accommodation nearby page lists places you can stay locally.