Tips for a newbie

Hi everyone I’m new to AA in the process of building my first RAS system using (2) 55 gal drums. I will be stocking with channel catfish in the next couple of weeks. I will also be adding a dwc trough/bed as more project funds become available. Excited to finally work with some fish !


Awesome hope you enjoy the process! I’d highly recommend checking out various libraries like the FAO manual, kentucky state manual, and AFPS all found here. Could help troubleshoot and helps with various design considerations.

Hello everyone I’m new to AA and my interests is to start a fresh water fish farm. I picked salmon, trout, carp and maybe catfish. I’m in the research stage of planning and I look forward to learning more.

If you know of any local AP enthusiasts, then ask them whether or not they will donate the sludge from their radial/swirl filter, this sludge will help kickstart your AP bacterium, otherwise you may have urinate into the AP system to encourage the bacterium.

Remember the water temperatures inside DWC systems are difficult to maintain in colder climates

Catfish are a good choice.

Fish are usually slowly added to an AP system to create a stable equilibrium.

Ensure your DWC has plenty of air stones along its length. At one end of the DWC trough prior to the water returning back to the RAS. Create a 1.5m deep trench to act as a built-in sump.

Add a filter screen between the trough and sump to avoid debris blockages.

Add an airlift pump inside the sump to help re-circulate and oxygenate the water returning back to the RAS.

If you need further guidance or troubleshooting issues that the AP archives can’t assist then PM me.

Good luck

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