Study Shows That Male Dolphins Use Gifts & 'Wingmen' to Attract Female Dolphins, So Just Like Humans But Cuter

A decade long study conducted by the University of Western Australia, University Zurich, and Murdoch University uncovered, “surprising mating rituals,” among humpback dolphins. The study published in online journal Scientific Reports found evidence that “male humpback dolphins bring female dolphins large sea sponges — which they may use to fish — in an apparent effort to mate.”

The research also uncovered that the dolphins travel in pairs or bring a wingman to help each other mate. So, not much different from the two frat bros in coordinating snapbacks you’re trying to dodge at the local bar’s Thirsty Thursday event. But we admire the effort and the spirit of collaboration.

In the video below you can see the male humpback dolphin tossing a colorful object in the air and researchers believe this is a way for him to show strength and quality as a mating partner. 

“It highlights to us that there is another species out there that is quite socially complex ,more socially complex than we had previously recognized, and also that they engage in these complex behaviors," Dr. Simon Allen, lead author of the study, said in a video discussing his research. "They are problem solvers, they are thinking animals, and there are these complex communities of animals that are just there, living just off our coast line just beneath the waves.”

The next step in the research process will be seeing if the gifts and wingmen actually help the dolphins get lucky, or if they swim back home alone. And, if we're going to be honest here, we're invested.