Tool was born around 1986 although we don’t know who his mother is. He has a very distinctive fin, mostly from encounters with other males. He spends most of his time with two other males, Poodle and Hosehead.
Quasi’s full name is Quasipee. He was born in 1988 and is part of a male alliance called the Kroker Spaniels. His alliance partners are Krok, Deet, Dangit, Ceebie, Imp, Midgie, Pasta, Pong, Bolt, and occasionally Noggin. Ceebie and Quasi have been buddies since they were calves, but he joined up with the other males later. He is one of the youngest males in that alliance- with only Midgie being a year younger. Quasi has no surviving siblings. His sister, Symphony, disappeared in 2003. As a calf, Quasi was very close to his mother, Pseudopee and nursed for 5 years, a very long time, especially for a male calf.
Puck was born in 1976 to Crookedfin, who was one of the original old females that was fed at Monkey Mia. Puck still visits the beach and accepts fish handouts from visitors. She is an excellent mother and has a very large family including younger brother Cookie, two daughters – Piccolo and Kiya, and two sons, India and Samu. She also has two grand-daughters, Eden and Flute and is expecting two more grand-offspring in 2011.
The marks on Puck’s fin were caused by a fishing net. In 1994 Puck was feeding on mullet- as were the fishermen and she charged into the fishing net after the mullet. She became wrapped up in the net and her young daughter Piccolo panicked. Puck couldn’t surface to breathe. Fortunately, one of the researchers was nearby and noticed what happened. She alerted the fisherman who helped get Puck out of the net. Puck and Samu are currently the ‘stars’ of a BBC documentary “The Dolphins of Shark Bay.”
Pub is part of the large Skrub family, with an older brother Grub and two younger sisters Rubadub and Hubba. He also has another young sibling, Bubba, who researchers don’t know the sex of. Pub was born in 1995 and is a sponger, like his mother and everyone else in his family. Pub is not in a stable alliance yet. He spends a lot of his time with other spongers, including Dali, another male sponger, but also some young males that don’t sponge, such as Ceeya, Granite and Beethoven.
Noggin is an old male and scientists estimate that he is in his early 30s. He sometimes spends time with a male alliance called the Kroker Spaniels, but he isn’t a full member of this alliance. Most of the time he is alone or with female groups. Noggin has a very distinctive fin from when he was attacked by a tiger shark in 1995. After the attack, he wasn’t recognizable and researchers gave him a new name for a few years before they figured out who he was! Fortunately, their body pigment is also distinctive and researchers can match up body shots in addition to fins. Noggin is almost always found in deep channels where the spongers hang out, but he is not a sponger.
Nicky was born in 1975 and is one of the oldest dolphins that scientists have tracked from birth. This is largely because she and her mother, Holeyfin, were fed by fishers and later tourists. Nicky still visits the beach at Monkey Mia daily with her current daughter, Fin.
Nicky had her first calf, Nipper in 1987, but she learned some bad habits from her mother, Holeyfin, including begging from boats. Because she is a bit too obsessed with getting fish handouts, rather than looking after her offspring, 7 of her offspring have died. Fin, born in 2008, is her most recent offspring and will hopefully survive.
Mouse is Mini’s last-born daughter. She was born in 1991 and nursed for 7 years! Mouse had her first calf, Mighty, in 2003, only 5 years after she stopped nursing. Mighty, a male calf, is doing very well and has several young male buddies. Like her mother, Mouse likes to hunt in deep water. Mouse’s older brother Skini is part of a big alliance called the “Prima Donnas.”
Kite is one of the sponger females (uses marine sponges as a hunting tool) and was born to Kestrel in 1989. Naturally Kestrel was also a sponger and Kite’s offspring, Osprey, is a sponger as well. Osprey is being weaned in 2011. Kite spends most of her time sponging, but when she isn’t sponging, she spends time with her sponger friends, especially Demi, Dodger, Gumby and Bytfluke.
Joy was born in 1979 and was Holeyfin’s last surviving offspring. Although she is Nicky’s sister, no sisters could be more different. As soon as Joy was weaned, she had very little to do with the people at Monkey Mia and she never accepted fish handouts.
After Holeyfin died in 1995, Joy began spending more and more time in an adjacent bay that researchers call Whale Bight. She doesn’t associate with her sister at all and while Nicky is a bit of a loner, Joy is more sociable. Joy’s calves, Laughin and Bliss also survived and her son Ecstasy is doing well.
Dodger was born in 1999 to Demi and is the grand-daughter of Half-fluke, the first sponging dolphin that researchers discovered. Demi began sponging in 1989 at 2 years of age, and Dodger also began sponging when she was 2 years old. Thus, Dodger is a 3rd generation sponger. She has a pretty twisted up dorsal fin and is easily recognizable. Her younger sister, Ashton, is also a sponger and the sisters spend quite a bit of time together when they aren’t busy sponging. Like all spongers, Dodger spends most of her time in deep channels where she can find her sponge tools and the fish she prefers.