Scientists have recently observed humpback male dolphins in the region presenting females with large marine sponges in the hope of impressing them.
They also observed male humpback dolphins acting as “wingmen” for each other– this type of male cooperation is unusual in dolphins given that paternity can’t be shared.
This is the first time this level of social complexity has been observed in dolphins.
There are three possible reasons for this behavior, he said: “It’s gift giving, it’s a signal of his fitness (so) quality as a mate, or it’s a threat to coerce her into mating with him.”
Some male dolphins even adopt the “banana pose,” whereby a big male will lie at the water surface with his head and tail arched up — almost as if he is flexing his muscles.
Previous research conducted on the bottle-nose dolphins of Shark Bay indicates “these male alliances are generally very tight units, and even when they are following a female, they spend most of their time petting and touching each other, reinforcing that love is love, no matter what the sex or the species,” said Allen.