Waterfowler Fred Reitmeyer Jr. of Pomona, NJ carves his decoys using the tools and techniques he learned from his grandfather, the legendary boat builder Carl Adams. He began carving at the age of 12, making his first decoys, a rig of black ducks, from cork. Fred Reitmeyer carves a classic Barnegat Bay decoy but instead of gouging out his hollow decoys, he uses a resource efficient three piece technique developed by his grandfather. Carl Adam utilized scrap plank ends, hollowed out the middle piece with a saber saw and saved the refuse for a duck head or a sand piper.
A regular demonstrator at the Tuckerton Seaport, Fred Reitmeyer teaches youth carving classes and he is an instructor in the Jersey Shore Folklife Center’s Jersey Traditions curriculum. Fred Reitmeyer represented New Jersey decoy carving traditions at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival in 2004 and he was one of six carvers in the state invited to participate in the 2004 Mid Atlantic Decoy Competition. Fred Reitmeyer is a NJ Master decoy carver teaching in the New Jersey Council on the Arts’ Apprenticeship program.