One of the first things we learned was that external water pumps are loud..
So we replaced them with submersible pumps which seem to last longer and makes the atmosphere much more enjoyable.
Then we learned that its really hard to heat water
If you look at the top of the picture you will see a bucket heater that is supposed to get up to 150 degrees...it didn't work...but I'll share later what did. Also notice that at the bottom we made a float out of PVC pipe and a laundry basket to float the submersible pump so it wasn't sitting at the bottom just sucking up debris.
This is a picture taken recently after feeding the tilapia. Notice the gravel at the bottom. It only takes an hour for the water to get crystal clear now.
Also notice the baby fish swimming with the adults. Tilapia are trainable. We taught the babies to eat on one side of the pond and the adults to eat on the other!