Dr. Rachel Tinker-Kulberg is a professional researcher in plant biology and has acted as a scientific consultant on several small-scale aquaponic production systems. Rachel is currently designing an aquaponic system to raise shrimp using Biofloc technology. Biofloc uses a plant-based feed to encourage the growth of microorganisms that provide the shrimp with a diet that is sustainably produced and high in Omega-3s. Her ultimate goal is to create an aquaponic system that is closed-loop, low-input, creates zero waste, and maximizes the nutritional value that comes from an integrated fish and vegetable aquaponic operation.
To get her project off the ground, Rachel has focused on investing in the needed materials: pumps, aerators, and an oxygen meter. She has used the materials design and set up a new saltwater system. The first shrimp to be produced in the new system will grow with the Biofloc until the early fall.
A new website for the project is also being developed. Rachel plans to have a demonstration event for other farmers and aquaponic growers by November of 2016, once the shrimp have reached maturity.