Some of Our Projects

AquaBiotic Systems Bamboo Raft

Nor Cal Aquaponics Bamboo Raft

AquaBiotic Systems Bounty

AquaBiotic Systems Bountiful Harvest

AquaBiotic Systems

AquaBiotic Systems

Working with AquaBiotic Systems, Nor Cal Aquaponics designed and assisted in the installation of a Trout and cool season vegetable based system in Santa Cruz, California. This system was the first of its kind in the country using local, untreated and sustainably produced bamboo as floating rafts.

AquaBiotics Trout

3 Month Old Trout

This technique of “Floating Farming” was brought back to the United States by Nor Cal Aquaponics' researchers studying this system of farming and learning age old methods from the farmers themselves in Burma. The system produces nearly all of it's own feed and uses rainwater harvesting and storage to provide system water. We capture all fish waste and send it to a worm bin to reproduce worms, worm castings, compost, compost tea and more as valuable sources of food, fertility, organic pest prevention and disease control. The system has been in operation for almost a year now, with very little to no outside resources needed. It is maintained at optimal health and production levels with only 2 hrs. of labor a week! We now use this site as a place to hold hands-on trainings, on-site Aquaponics consultations, guided tours, videos documentation and Permaculture based Aquaponics research and experimentation.

A video of our work at AquaBiotic Systems

Finca Neptuno Installation

Finca Neptuno's Recirculating Aquaponics Installation

Finca Neptuno Lake

Finca Neptuno's 200 Acre Flow-Through Aquaponics System

Rice Canas

70 Acres of Aquaponically Fed Rice

Finca Neptuno Installation

Finca Neptuno's Aquaponics Fish Hatchery

Finca Neptuno - "Neptune’s Farm"

A Permaculture Inspired Aquaponics Farm and Institute

Finca Neptuno Map

Finca Neptuno – 200 acres

Nor Cal Aquaponic Systems

Located in the north western part of Costa Rica, Finca Neptuno began in 2010 as a project of Nor Cal Aquaponics. The goal was to transform an existing Costa Rican Aquaculture project into a Permaculture based Aquaponics farm and Institute. We hoped to help any local farmers desiring to learn these techniques while serving as a fully operational example. The nearly 200 acre Aquaculture farm had not been in operation for several years and cows living on the land were eroding and destroying the elaborate labyrinth of levies, berms, dams, ponds and lakes. Piles of pesticide barrels, bottles, containers and trash littered the farm. It was offered to Nor Cal Aquaponics in the condition we found it. We begin the huge task of cleaning up the land and restoring the farm. Soon we had 50,000 Tilapia, Guapote, Mojarra, Tilapia, Catfish, eels and other species being cultivated once more in the ponds. We were breeding fish, eels, shrimp and crayfish.

Nor Cal Aquaponic Systems

Red Headed Mojarra, beautiful & delicious!

In addition to being one of the world’s largest Aquaponics project, Finca Neptuno provided Aquaponics and Permaculture based education to the public while exemplifying methods of farming that heal the land in the process. Finca Neptuno would act as a demonstration of how a farm can clean polluted water, grow an abundance of food and other useful crops, advance regenerative farming skills and methods, create local jobs, use no chemicals, conserve energy and can be implemented at a large scale in the dry tropics. In addition to farming and education, Neptune’s Farm was conducting cutting edge Aquaponics research and experimentation.

Finca Neptuno Tilapia

Tilapia in one of Finca Neptuno's Ponds

Staff and University students were keeping daily records and data so that we can continue to learn from and improve this amazing whole systems design science. The farm is now being used to produce large scale crayfish and rice. After each crop of rice, the crayfish clean and prepare the fields, while feeding and fattening up in the process. This is another example of how Aquaculture (the crayfish) and Agriculture (the rice) can support and help each other in diverse and dynamic ways.

Aquaponics Float Rack Roots

UHS Classroom Aquaponics System

Nor Cal Aquaponic Systems

High School System Construction

Interview at the High School Fish and Farm Program

The Ukiah High School, Ukiah California

Ukiah High School

Nor Cal Aquaponics is currently working with the Agriculture department at Ukiah High School to construct an Aquaponics system on campus that will serve as an educational model, working farm, student run business and revenue source for the UHS Ag. Dept. The system has been funded by donations and a $12,000 grant from North Coast Opportunities. It will be housed in an existing greenhouse which in currently being renovated and adapted to meet the needs of the Aquaponics mini-farm. This project is providing the students with cutting edge education in Aquaponics, Ecological Design, Sustainable Living and real life hands-on experience. Due to the diverse nature of the system it will also be used by other UHS departments and students providing new educational opportunities, examples include; Science, Biology, Engineering, Metal and Wood arts, etc.

Time Magazine Video Featuring Our Ukiah High School Aquaponics Program

All labor is being performed by students, volunteers, Max Meyers and the Nor Cal Aquaponics team. Once completed, the solar powered and heated greenhouse will produce fish, prawns, vegetables, worms, compost, fertilizer, algae, aquatics plants, snails, insects and methane gas. The UHS Aquaponic mini-farm is a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) system and subscriptions for lettuce have already been received. We feel very fortunate and excited to be a part of such an amazing project that will not only produce food for local businesses and our community, but also provide an amazing educational model for current and future generations.

Thank you everyone for all your dedication, hard work and support!

Estimated completion date Summer 2012

Finca Las Nubes System Construction

Finca Las Nubes System Construction

One of Our Breeders

One of Our Breeders

Finca Las Nubes Raft With Tomatoes

Finca Las Nubes Raft With Tomatoes

Nor Cal Aquaponics

Finca Las Nubes, San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

Finca Las Nubes

Working with Chris Robertson of Finca Las Nubes in San Juan Del Sur, Nicaragua we designed and assisted in the installation of an Aquaponics system intended to provide food, employment and income for the local community. Finca Las Nubes was started 12 years ago with the intention of creating a thriving landscape, sustainable community, eco-retreat, organic farm and Permaculture education center. Emphasis is place on maintaining local and Nicaraguan cultural while providing education, training, rich living conditions, employment and housing to some 50 or so Nicaraguan people.

aquaponics design

Max Meyers and Nor Cal Aquaponics were not only asked to build a system capable of producing 1,000 lbs. of fish and 20,000 heads of lettuce, cilantro and basil annually, but to help in the creation of a Permaculture education center. These projects produce fresh local food for the community, and act as a demonstration system and education model to all who visit, work, live and train at the farm.

Completed April 2010

Nor Cal Aquaponic System in Nicaragua

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Our Aquaponics Systems:

  • Produce up to 100% of the system's needs within the system itself!
  • Use up to 98% less water than conventional farming methods!
  • Produce up to ten times more vegetables and crops in the same amount of space and time!
  • Use up to 75% less energy than almost any other farming method!
  • Are guaranteed to be free from chemical fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, fungicides and other chemicals!
  • Require only about 1/2 the labor required by almost all other food production methods!
  • Virtually eliminates weeds, pests, diseases, viruses and pathogens for both aquatic and plant life alike!
  • Can be used in almost any situation and can range in size, from desk top systems to large scale commercial farms!
  • Saves time, money and labor in all stages of production!
  • Don't require soil, enabling otherwise "undesirable" sites or land to be used to produces fresh, organic fish, vegetables, fruit and more!

Nor Cal Aquaponics

Nor Cal Aquaponics

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Proud Member of the Aquaponics Association