Aquaculture in Tanzania

PROBLEM STATEMENT: In Tanzania, fisheries have become so exhausted that fishermen are struggling to make a living and are resorting to highly detrimental methods such as blast fishing to bolster their harvests. Without seeking alternative technologies, overfishing risks destroying ocean ecosystems and marine-dependent societies alike.


  1. Publicize the benefits of aquaponics as a self-sustaining alternative to conventional fishing and growing

  2. Adapt an aquaponics system to the site at Mbutu Amani
  3. Develop alterations to the system’s design to allow it to be implemented in a variety of different sites and environments
  4. Create an alternative source of income and food while simultaneously working towards a healthier ocean


  • Basics of aquaponics:aquarium-aquaponics.jpg

    • Aquaponics = combination of raising fish & growing plants
      1. Fish raised in tank and produce ammonia (waste)
      2. Tank water used to irrigate plants
      3. Soil bacteria convert fish wastes into usable nitrates (fertilizers)
      4. Clean water is returned to fish tanks
      5. Both halves thrive!
    • Variety of benefits
      • No waste produced (reused fertilizer and water)
      • Self-sustaining (does not require constant input)Aquaponics_at_Growing_Power,_Milwaukee.jpg
      • Produces a variety of food (fish, vegetables) as well as herbs for medicine, etc.
      • Eliminates need for imported food products & establishes local economy
      • Food security
      • Drought, land scarcity, or poor soil quality have no effect on the system’s production
    • Materials
      • Fish tanks
      • Plant beds


      • Water pump
      • Aeration pump
      • Irrigation tubing
      • Fish & plants
    • Adaptability
      • Can use recycled objects (metal troughs, bathtubs) as fish tanks
      • Will work on any scale
        • Home, neighborhood, community, city…
      • Exist in vertical or horizontal spaces
      • Success is not dependent on weather or climate

  • Site description:


Mbutu Amani, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
4 ponds on 12 acres
2 wells

Fish auction in Dar

gyy.pngphoto 5.JPG

  • Where else could this work- Long-term solutions:
    • Kenya- materials are available locally, warm weather reduces heating costs, local agriculture to keep money recirculating to boost local economy, uses 90% less water than traditional agriculture (perfect for this fresh water
      Pilot Aquaponics Project - Kisumu
      Pilot Aquaponics Project – Kisumu

      deficient area), successful in arid climates

    • Gaza- can be done in small spaces and on rooftops (ideal for a war-ridden territory where long-term agricultural investment is not really an option), shortages of water and electricity are not an issue
    • Your own home- small set-ups quite possible, little work has to be done to keep it functioning
    • Key point: use a Permacultural Lens- observe and then interact. Do the people eat fish? Would the set-up be too invasive/destructive for the area? No single solution to cure hunger, poverty, or depleted oceans, but unique, specialized solutions in different areas can make a world of change!
  • Building holistic systems- Ocean Impact:
    • external image water_16660306.jpg?w=560Helps combat effects of over-fishing: 90% of protein consumption in Tanzania consists of fish
    • Most fishing occurs in sea grass beds, mangrove, and coral reefs; supplying fish protein through aquaponics cuts down on reef destruction already occurring due to warming ocean temperatures and pollution.
    • Climate change has caused unpredictability of rains, leading local people to overcompensate for sketchy food sourcesby fishing even more or migrating out of native areas: aquaponics allows people to remain in their homelands without causing extensive damage to fish populations; helps counteract the stresses of global climate change
    • Commercial fisheries create mass dead zones from fish waste (nitrogen); aquaponics utilizes this nitrogen to fuel plant growth


Ande Fieber

Megan van Hamersveld
Kylie Zarmati


About Aquaponics

Healthy Harvest Hydroponics SLO

Aquaponics with Permaculture

Third World Aquaponics

Aquaponics in Kenya

Aquaponics at Cal Poly

Aquaponics in Gaza

Backyard Aquaponics


Step 1 for changing the world: monkey around a little.

Kylie loving on the aquaponicly grown plants!
What a beautiful set-up! Greenhouse F on Campus