Florida Bay and the Florida Keys support a globally unique fishery, and are not only the home of Flats Fishing, but essentially the home of saltwater fly fishing as well. The Florida Keys, with its shallow clear water and myriad saltwater species, became the proving ground for saltwater fly fishing -- www.flyfishinghistory.com. It was after World War II that fly anglers discovered a new dimension of angling possibilities here in the Florida Keys. Advances in outboard motor technology allowed guides to explore new territory and focus on developing new techniques. The world class fly anglers came next. Captain Jimmy Albright, of Islamorada, one of the pioneers of Flats Fishing, guided Joe Brooks and Ted Williams to many ground breaking angling achievements. With Jimmy as his guide Joe Brooks landed one of the first bonefish caught on fly. Along with Jimmy Albright, Captains Harry Snow of Marathon and Bill Smith of Islamorada strove to enhance the adventuresome angler's chances of landing record breaking shallow water gamefish species such as tarpon, permit, and bonefish.
These inshore species are not the only possibilities for the Florida Keys angler. Here a person can experience fishing for the offshore species as well. In the early 1900's angling author Zane Grey discovered the Florida Keys and frequented the Long Key Fishing Club which later succumbed to the Great Hurricane of 1935. Here an angler can fish inshore one day for bonefish, permit, tarpon, snook, and redfish, and then offshore the next for sailfish, dolphin, wahoo, tuna, snapper, and grouper.