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Aquaponics: Natural Feeds, Cutting Costs & Creating Value Added Products

May 9, 2015


May 9, 2015 (10 am-5pm)

Located at Healing with CAARE, for directions click here.

Register online (Part two):
Registration limited to 50 people – Pre-registration and pre-payment required. Please bring a bag lunch.


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Topics covered :

  • Introduction to the human health and nutritional benefits of natural feeds
  • Fish disease identification and treatment
  • Production of Natural Fish Feeds and Fish-safe Organic Insecticides
  • Re-use of Fish solid waste
  • Hands-on construction of small and large worm composting bins
  • Indoor Aquaponic growing considerations
  • Permaculture Concepts
  • Review of Food-safety issues and GAP / Organic certifications

This workshop is geared toward people who are interested in producing natural feeds to boost the omega-3 content of their fish products, as well as cut costs by growing their own natural feeds and other value-added products. Specific topics that will be address are:  artificial lighting considerations, feed size based on fish growth, safe-treatment of fish disease, purging, harvesting and processing of fish,  duckweed and worm propagation, feed and insecticide (worm tea) preparation, companion planting and seed saving, good agricultural practices , and how to create value-add products (take home samples of worms , worm tea, and duckweed provided) .

Taught by: Aaron Harris, Rachel Kulberg, PhD & Mike Yablonski, PhD




 About the instructors:

mikeMichael J. Yablonski, Ph.D. was educated as a biologist and a biochemist. He has worked in biochemical research, pharmaceuticals, plant biotechnology, wastewater remediation, and biofuels. In 2006, he began working with duckweed as a wastewater remediation system, and this lead to the use of duckweed for integrated and sustainable agriculture, where the duckweed is also used as food for most types of farm animals, including fish.

During the past 3 years, he has been designing, building and operating aquaponics systems, and a special type of aquaponics format which utilizes duckweed. His experience with aquaponics has included the building of medium-scale systems for home use, and, since 2011, the use of these systems to teach 6 DIY workshops through the Abundance Foundation at Piedmont Biofuels. He has also promoted aquaponics by teaching tutorials, giving lectures at community colleges, and consulting on the design of aquaponic systems in restaurants, schools, and other public service institutions. Mike is also building aquaponic systems which are focused on the development of cold water (energy-saving) systems, applications to garden ponds, and special types of systems that can be used for home aquariums.

His approach to aquaponics stresses experimentation to obtain truly innovative aquaponic methods, and a strict adherance to the use of naturally-occurring materials, to keep aquaponics a clean and reliable type of organic agriculture. Mike’s personal interests include ecology, landscape gardening, and the culture of unusual types of plants, such as aquatic, carnivorous, epiphytic, and xerophytic plants. You can reach him at mjyablonski@gmail.com.

rachelRachel Tinker-Kulberg, Ph.D. is founder of AquaponicFood4Thought, LLC and provides science or research support to teachers, organizations, and individuals trying to promote public awareness about healthy food choices and environmental sustainability by using Aquaponics as a project-based learning tool. She is currently engaged in several Aquaponic builds throughout the Triad area that will serve to increase access to healthy food to the surrounding community while educating the users in sustainable farming techniques or simply serve to provide an aesthetic addition to their landscape or business space To learn more or contact her, please visit her websites at: linkedin.com/in/aquaponicsfood4thought or www.aquaponicfood4thought.com




Aaron Harris is a Detroit native and graduate of Michigan State University College of Agriculture and Natural Resource. He has worked over 15 years as an adult educator and is passionate about helping people learn to grow food and live healthier lives.