Tilapia

I am going to tell you about our  tilapia journey.  We purchased them in May from a Tilapia farm in the mid west.   This farm has regular inspections and is known for shipping fish that are free of disease.  We received 50 tilapia in total.  For the first few months our tilapia were doing great.  About three weeks ago, we noticed that we were finding dead tilapia in the bottom of our tank.  We were keeping the baby tilapia in our sump tank under the floating raft beds so that they would be easier to catch and watch.  Most days we we just threw some fishfood in the sump and went about our chores.  Well the next thing we know 10 fish have died.  A couple days later, 10 more fish are dead.  What is going on?  I became worried and went to the all knowing internet.  I found out that fish can get MRSA.   This is a strep virus that I became very familiar with when I worked in the hospital.  I found a doctor that treated fish and I took in a small sample of my fish to see if my research was correct.  The vet looked at my water testing results and she also did a skin scraping on the fish.  This skin scrapping was positive for MRSA.  She put the fish on injectable antibiotics.

Yeah read that again, injectable antibiotics.  Every three day I had to catch each fish and give them an injection right below the dorsal fin.  Honestly, it was not as bad as it sounds.  We worked out a system of catching all the fish, putting them in a holding tank, injecting them and then releasing them one at a time back into the big tank.

I would love to tell you that this solved all our problems, but sadly it did not.  To date we have lost all but 4 fish.  We are hoping that we are able to save at least one male and one female.  I think honestly we are going to end up doing a complete water change and starting all over.  It has been a very interesting experience and we are continuing to learn new things everyday.

Currently, in our Aquaponics system we are raising gold fish.  We lost a couple but for the most part they are doing well.  Our Tilapia are inside the house in a tank. We have 45 and they are about 4 inches long. They are doing well and we hope to one day be able to move them to the green house.

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2 Comments

2 thoughts on “Tilapia

  1. Any updates on your tilapia? I am also in Maryland and thinking of starting an aquaponics system with tilapia and hoping you have had better luck since this post.

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