Mobile fish ponds made of reinforced tarpaulin (a special tarpaulin material) are the current trend in fish pond technology.
Most new and existing fish farmers opt for tarpaulin fish ponds because of the many benefits they offer over concrete ponds, earthen ponds, plastic ponds and the rest.
So, in this piece, we’d be focusing on the construction and installation of mobile tarpaulin fish pond.
We’ll also look into fertilization of tarpaulin fish pond and some other tips.
These will enable you have a clear idea on how to construct, install and fertilize a tarpaulin fish pond.
How to Construct and Setup Mobile Tarpaulin Fish Pond – DIY (Do It Yourself) and Semi-DIY Methods.
To start using a mobile fish pond, there a various ways you could go about its construction and set up.
The recommended way is the DIY (Do It Yourself) or Semi-DIY approach.
What this means is that you do it yourself. That is, you purchase the right tarpaulin (the exact quality suitable for fish pond) yourself and find a local welder/carpenter and plumber to fix up the frame and plumbing fittings for the pond. Then you can install the tarpaulin with the frame constructed and you have a fish pond.
If you do not have the time to handle the process yourself, you could use the semi-DIY method where you engage someone else around you and give them a tip, say N5k, when they are done. This person(s) could be your brother, friend, staff, a street acquaintance or any person that you can send on errand.
Advantages of DIY and Semi-DIY Methods of Fish Pond Construction and Setup
There are various reasons why new and existing users of mobile fish pond go for the DIY or semi-DIY approaches explained above. Three among these reasons include:
Assured of Best Quality Tarpaulin Suitable for Fish Pond
Yes. The recommended methods stated above to constructing and setting up mobile fish ponds give you the opportunity to purchase the best quality of fish pond tarpaulin that you desire and be sure of what you are using.
You may find some fish pond vendors that will offer to sell you the complete set of fish pond – i.e. the fish pond tarpaulin and the framework material combined. The problem there is that most of them (if not all) are using an inferior canopy-grade tarpaulin instead of reinforced tarpaulin. This is in the bid to maximize profit for themselves.
They all have sweet tongues and act very nice until they get your money, install the fish ponds and then change their attitudes when you start having problems with the tarpaulins they supplied.
So, if you intend to invest your money in using mobile fish ponds, just save your self some future headache and go for the right quality.
Save Some Cost
Another advantage is that you get to save between N10k to N20k per fish pond that you install, if you do it yourself. That figure might reduce by about N5k if you engage someone else via the semi-DIY, but it is still much better.
Create Local Employment and Earn Goodwill
If you intend to hire someone around you to help you do the running-around involved in setting up the fish pond, then you are helping to create income earning opportunity for the people around you. This, of course, earns you some goodwill and boosts your PR.
Building, Construction and Installation of Mobile Tarpaulin Fish Pond
The following are some steps you can take to construct and install your mobile fish pond;
Purchase The Fish Pond Tarpaulin:
The first step will be to purchase the fish pond tarpaulin.
Remember, it is not the normal canopy-grade tarpaulin material that you should purchase for fish pond.
Those canopy-grade tarpaulin are usually classified as first quality, second quality, third quality, etc. in the local markets. So be wary when you hear such terms.
Some local dealers even try to use terms such as Korea quality, Japan quality, Indian quality, China quality, Turkey quality, Thailand quality, etc. to sell their tarpaulins.
The reinforced quality that you need for fish pond has nothing to do with where the tarpaulin was produced, but has everything to do with the tensile strength, ultraviolet-stabilization and other engineering properties of the tarpaulin. It also does not come in varying qualities and grades.
To get the right quality of tarpaulin for fish pond, it is strongly recommended you purchase directly from the website of Benuwatts Company Limited and have them produce and ship the fish pond tarpaulin to you.
Benuwatts is the largest and most trusted manufacturer of fish pond tarpaulins in Nigeria.
Purchase Frame Material and Hire Local Technician to Construct Framework
Having received your tarpaulin, the next step will be to construct a frame what you will use to set up the tarpaulin into a fish pond.
There are various materials that you can use for the frame. Popular among the materials are galvanized pipes (or other iron pipes), wood and bamboo.
You should decide on which to use.
The advantage of using wood or bamboo to set up your tarpaulin into fish pond is that wood is cheaper (in comparison to galvanized pipe). However, its disadvantage is that you will need to change the wood after a year or two. But, by then, you would have made some profit from two or more batches of fishes to enable you change the woods. So, in essence, using wood makes sense for someone who is on a very tight budget.
The disadvantage of galvanized iron pipe is that it is expensive. You will need to cough out enough money at the initial time. But, once you are able to set up your fish pond using galvanized pipes, its advantage is that is lasts much longer than the other frame materials.
If you settled to use wood for your mobile fish pond, you will need to get in touch with a carpenter who will hit up the frame for you (except you have the necessary tools to do that). You could even involve the carpenter in the selection of the size of wood that will be suitable (usually 2×4 inches wood for the horizontal stands) and in buying the wood from the local market.
A simple picture (as below) should tell the carpenter what to do. Constructing mobile fish pond with wood is quite an easy job and doesn’t require any special carpentry skill, so most road-side carpenters should be able to hit up the wood framework for you.
A provision is already made across the top of the fish pond tarpaulin through which wood can be passed.
Same with galvanized iron.
If you are looking at using galvanized iron pipes to construct your mobile fish pond, it makes the whole process easier to involve a welder who will weld the metallic pipes into joints using his welding machine.
The welder could guide you in even purchasing the iron pipes you can use.
Since the construction of mobile fish pond using iron pipes does not require any special welding skill, an average road-side welder within your location can do it. In fact, even as a novice, you may not find it difficult to do if you have a cutting tool and welding machine.
Plumbing Works for Your Mobile Fish Pond
You will always need some plumbing works to be done on your mobile fish pond. This includes fixing an outlet hole for the discharge of waster water from the fish pond or an inlet pipe for the supply of fresh water to the pond.
If you do not have some basic tools and materials needed to fix the fittings such as back nut, ball gauge and the rest, it is good you call a plumber that will buy and fix the needed materials.
Benuwatts tarpaulins do not come with any drainage hole on them, giving you the liberty to create an opening that will match with the diameter of the pipes and back nut that are easily available in your locality.
Videos of Construction and Installation of Mobile Fish Pond (Tarpaulin).
The following three videos are quite helpful as visual guides on how to go about constructing your mobile fish pond.
The illustration was done using galvanized pipes, but it is just similar logic that you apply if you intend to use wood or any other material for the frame.
You can always show the videos to any welder or carpenter and it should be clearer what they should do.
Video 1: How to Build, Setup, Construct or Install Mobile Fish Pond (Purchasing Galvanized Pipes and Setting up the framework Using a Local Welder)
This first video focuses on explaining how to construct the metal frame for the mobile fish pond tarpaulin. It mentions the dimensions of the pipes used.
One very important thing to note here is the horizontal frames talked about at 2:43 minutes of this video.
It is very important to have a horizontal frame across your tarpaulin for every one feet (beginning from the bottom) that you fill up water. Installing your mobile fish pond and filling it up with water without those horizontal bracings is really bad practice.
Video 2: Build, Construction, Installation and Setting Up of Mobile Fish Pond Tarpaulin (Fitting Your Fish Pond Tarpaulin Unto the Galvanized Pipe Frame)
This second video explains how to fix the mobile fish pond tarpaulin unto the metal pipe frame that has been constructed by the welder. Quite easy.
Video 3: Building, Construction, Installation and Setting Up of Mobile Fish Pond Tarpaulin (Necessary Pluming for Drainage Channel)
This third video shows how to create a hole on the fish pond tarpaulin and install the necessary pvc fittings such as back nut, ball gauge, and others for the drainage channel.
Treatment and Fertilization of Mobile Fish Pond Tarpaulin
Fish pond treatment and fertilization are terms that are used interchangeably to refer to practices that are aimed at cleaning up the fish pond and making it ready for fishes to be farmed in it. Whereas ‘pond treatment’ may consist of organic and non-organic means of getting the fish pond ready, ‘fertilization’ is usually focused on organic means.
Why Treat and Fertilize Mobile Fish Pond Before Use?
When you purchase a new fish pond tarpaulin, it is expected to still have some residue of the chemicals used in producing the tarpaulin. Most times, you’d notice this in the way the tarpaulin smells. The chemical residue isn’t good for fishes and could easily kill them off, depending on the concentration of the chemicals.
To be on a safe side, it is vital to treat and fertilize the fish pond tarpaulin before use.
How to Treat and Fertilize Mobile Fish Pond Tarpaulin?
Cleaning up a new fish pond tarpaulin to get it ready to host fishes is known as treatment or fertilization.
Treating or fertilizing a pond helps to destroy chemicals that were used to produce the tarpaulin, which could affect or even kill off your fishes.
Benuwatts recommends the following steps to treat or fertilize your fish pond tarpaulin:
- Wash the new fish pond tarpaulin thoroughly with water and salt.
- Fill up water to a reasonable extent (say half of the pond),
- Add dried leaves into the water.
- Tie up organic wastes such as poultry droppings or cow dung in a sac bag and put it into the tarpaulin containing the water and leaves. Organic wastes that fill a two liter container should be enough.
The sack should be such that can allow the organic waste to leak into the water gradually, so it is not wise to use nylon (except you wish to perforate it). Just one sac is enough for a fish pond of about 12x12x4 feet.
- Allow the mixture to stay for 3 days for fertilization to take place. Then drain out the dirty water and wastes.
- Fill in clean water and introduce your fishes.