Snail farming - Farm idea

It occurred to me a while ago that the basic aquaponics system could be adapted to growing snails. This came about partly because my lease says I'm not to have fish, but mentions nothing about snails, and partly because I couldn't help it.

Sometimes stuff just occurs to me.

My current aquaponics system looks like this. Water (and fish) at the bottom, veggies growing in an inert media in the container above.

I could just add snails to the top garden section, but they would eat everything to death within seconds.

My plan would be to restrict how much of the fresh growing vegetable matter they could get at, in the hope that the plants could be kept alive for ever.

It would look something like this.

"A" and "B" would be the normal water levels of the flood and drain cycle, And "C" would be a once or twice a day rinse to bring down solids from the snail area. Those brown things are my depiction of snails. Those green things are lettuce growing.

The snails would be in a stainless steel wire cage, which would allow them access to only the tops of plants (lettuce etc) growing in the aquaponics system.

The cage would be covered on all sides so the snails couldn't escape, and would have some terracotta pots to hide under, water, calcium supplements, and whatever else it turns out snails like.

The rinse cycle should in theory, pull solids down into the garden level, where added compost worms would digest them and spread them out,  so the nitrifying bacteria in the media could do its thing. This would in turn feed the plants that would partly feed the snails.

The system wouldn't work as an endless loop because I'll be pulling snails out for escargot. Once you eat something from the system, the removed energy needs to be replaced. That's where the veggie scraps come in. Since moving from the country where we had all kinds of scraps eating critters that did things like convert scraps to eggs, I've become a bit freaked at how much food we throw away.

Gram for gram the scraps represent almost as much as we eat. Much of it will make snail food.

So that's the plan, but plans have a habit of changing around here.

Inputs would be household kitchen scraps, and perhaps a little calcium for their shells.

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