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Materials of Opportunity

Leaving a Legacy of Love & Plenty of Fish

David Walter is a pioneer in changing the game of fishing along the Gulf Coast and leaving a lasting legacy for generations to come. Alabama's artificial reef program is as unique as the man who continues to create it.  David shares in his book Reef Making, that the northern Gulf of Mexico has no natural reef system like those found in the Florida Keys, Cancun, Belize and other tropical areas.

David began with intentions on rebuilding the fishing community during the late 80's and early 90's, but later found himself with more need than he imagined. Utilizing what he calls "materials of opportunity," he thrives on the ability to reduce, reuse, and revamp our artificial reef systems from "junk" which in turn has helped to create a robust fishing community. Alabama is one of the few states that allows private businesses to develop artificial reefs within a specific radius. David and his team have created an emphasis on custom-designed artificial reefs made from a mixture of limestone and concrete. 

As a life long fisherman himself, his friends and colleagues tried numerous items before patenting his current reef models. After the 2010 BP oil spill, David and his team were one of the only businesses capable of rebuilding the fishing industry and providing artificial reefs while working to repair the damage along the gulf coast. The reefs that David and his team assemble come in several different shapes and sizes, some would even be surprised to know that his company offers memorial reefs for loved ones. "It's a great way to give someone a memorial who loved the gulf and fishing. People put all kinds of things on it in memory of their loved ones and it gives back to the marine life. We take people out all the time to set it out, it's an emotional experience, very moving. It's something they can come back to time and time again." 

David is so passionate and committed to the reefs that he wrote and published Reef Making in 2019. The book gives his detailed account of the history and process of creating artificial reefs. It can be found on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other book sale websites.