Tribe Profile
Namesake: Isla Casaya
Tribe Type: Starting Tribe
Day Formed: Day 1
Rival Tribe(s): Bayoneta
La Mina
Tribe Status: Merged with La Mina on Day 16
Challenge Wins: 6
Lowest Placing Member: Tina Scheer (16/16)
Highest Placing Member: Cirie Fields (4/16)

S12 Casaya Tribe Flag 02

Tribe Emblem

Casaya has no emblem.


Casaya buff

Casaya (known informally as the Older Women in their original form) was a tribe from Survivor: Panama.

Originally a tribe of middle-aged women, Casaya flourished at camp, but a Day 4 tribe swap severely changed the intertribal dynamics of the tribe, suffering from frequent clashes between its several strong personalities. Despite their lack of unity, Casaya managed to dominate in challenges and eventually achieved success after the merge. Their tribe color is purple.


Original Tribe

S12 cirie tS12 melinda tS12 ruthmarie tS12 tina t

Post-Tribe Switch

S12 aras tS12 bobby tS12 bruce tS12 cirie t
S12 courtney tS12 danielle tS12 melinda tS12 shane t

The Schoolyard Pick to choose the tribe went as follows:

  • Danielle chose Shane;
  • Shane chose Courtney;
  • Courtney chose Aras;
  • Aras chose Cirie;
  • Cirie chose Bobby;
  • Bobby chose Melinda.

With the tribes integrated with odd numbers (15, Tina was voted out beforehand), the only one not being called for a tribe will be sent to Exile Island up until Tribal Council, meaning that he/she would be ineligible to compete in the Immunity Challenge, immune from the vote, and would join the team that would lose a member by the end of the next Tribal Council. Melinda was voted out in that Tribal Council, and was replaced with Bruce to even up Casaya and La Mina with seven members each.

Tribe History

The Older Women

In spite having a tribe full of the older women (as Viveros member Bobby Mason called them the "Golden Girls"), Casaya's representative in the Reward Challenge, Ruth-Marie, landed her team in third place. In return, they received flint and with the stipulation that they would not have to have anyone stay on the dreaded Exile Island (the challenge took place on Exile).

Casaya prospered early in terms of camp life. Under the leadership of Tina (a lumberjill by profession), the group managed to create a decent shelter and bonfire. Having never camped outdoors, Cirie revealed an embarrassing concern, a "phobia on leaves." This gesture irked the tribe, particularly Tina, who targeted her as a weak link.

In the first Immunity Challenge, Casaya initially trailed together with Viveros, but while Casaya continued to stumble, Viveros bagged third place and were safe from the vote together with Bayoneta and La Mina. Tina wanted Cirie out for her weakness, and proved her worth as she caught one large fish (using her bare hands) to feed the hungry tribe. Melinda even admitted that "there's a gazillion reasons to keep Tina." But in their first Tribal Council, Tina harshly accused everyone of their poor work ethic, prompting Melinda and Ruth-Marie to question their allegiance to her. In the end, Tina's outspoken personality met her demise in a 3-1 vote.

The New Casaya

On Day 4, the four tribes divided by age and gender were mixed up into two new ones. Viveros and Bayoneta were disbanded, spreading the fifteen remaining castaways into the new Casaya and La Mina tribes. In a schoolyard-style selection, the new Casaya was composed of two former Viveros (Aras and Bobby), two former Bayoneta (Danielle and Courtney), a lone former La Mina (Shane), and two of the three remaining "Older Women" (Cirie and Melinda). Bruce (still wearing his old orange La Mina buff) was sent to Exile Island and would be staying there up until the next Tribal Council to join the losing tribe to replace its lost member. In their first challenge (a reward), the new Casaya managed to close the gap to La Mina, but eventually lost. Exiled castaway Bruce tried to look for the Idol, but failed.

Back at Casaya beach, the remaining "Older Women", Melinda and Cirie, were on the outs, when Shane made an alliance with Aras, Danielle, and Courtney. In the second Immunity Challenge, Casaya again failed to defeat La Mina, sending them to Tribal Council. Back in camp, newcomer Shane, who still had a hard time adapting to the challenging environment, adding up to his nicotine withdrawal, contemplated quitting initially, but eventually reaffirmed allegiances with Aras, Danielle, and Courtney. At Tribal Council, Melinda's fears solidified as she got voted out in a 5-2 vote, leaving Cirie as the lone "Older Woman" Casaya member. After the vote, Bruce (who watched the proceedings at Tribal Council) dropped his old buff, and donned a new purple buff and moved back to camp together with the rest of the Casaya tribe.

With Melinda eliminated, Bruce joined Casaya by the end of Night 6. The next day, Bruce, claiming to have previous camping experiences, proved his worth by improvising a water-filtration system (using the tribe's spare garments) so they need not boil the brackish water should the fire run out. This gesture boosted morale in the team, but Courtney became unsure of the contraption. At the next Reward Challenge, Casaya, still unable to defeat La Mina, lost for the third consecutive time (fourth, counting the first Immunity Challenge). La Mina sent Bruce to Exile Island for a second time, believing that his absence would demoralize the tribe, making Casaya fall apart even further and lose more challenges in the process. With the tribe experiencing a losing streak, Shane's alliance fell apart as Shane constantly had petty fights with Courtney and Danielle, angering Aras. This gesture made an opening for Cirie to break through the alliance and keep herself longer in the game. In the physically-punishing Immunity Challenge, Casaya managed to put their differences aside and eventually won their first Immunity Challenge, sending La Mina to their first Tribal Council.

As days went by, dysfunction in Casaya worsened up as Shane threw tantrums to his alliance with no apparent reason. Adding up the long list of Casaya's mishaps:

  • Their bonfire constantly ran out (with no one having the initiative to ignite another one).
  • Bruce made a "Zen Garden" instead of doing camp chores.
  • Bobby seemed to have a strong liking to the outhouse they won from a challenge.
  • Bobby and Bruce got drunk at one time, drinking up all the wine they won in one Reward Challenge and slept in the outhouse.

Despite the tribe's diversity and strong personalities, the tribe managed to win the next four challenges, dwindling the once-strong La Mina's numbers to five, opposing to Casaya's seven.

Bobby (a lawyer, former Viveros member) seemed to create controversy around camp (save for Shane's rampant mood swings) for his disconnected demeanor. Bobby created some friction with his teammates by disagreeing with how the outhouse (a prize from a previous Reward Challenge) should be used, though he gave Casaya their fourth consecutive victory by single-handedly whacking large fish as part of a Reward Challenge. The prize were a sack of rice, beans, and three large fish. Though victorious, the tribe realized that everything was wet (the challenge was held under rain), and had to eat the fish raw (much to Cirie's dismay). The same night, Bobby and Bruce stole all the wine (won in a previous challenge) and drank all of it in their outhouse/wood shed. The next day, Courtney and Danielle became upset that the wine, supposed to be drank by the whole tribe, ran out because of them, giving the obviously vulnerable Cirie a bigger room for breaking up Shane's alliance. She made a voting bloc with Danielle and Courtney to get rid of Bobby. And when La Mina won the fifth Immunity Challenge, Cirie's plan worked, as Bobby got voted out in a confusing 3-2-1-1 vote, an evidence that Casaya was still dysfunctional and ununified.

Casaya managed to pull things together by winning the Reward/Immunity Challenge, winning them a trip to a local village, food, and temporary contact with society. Shane made amends with Danielle as the tribe enjoyed barbecue, played soccer, and partied throughout the day - while La Mina suffered losing another member and dropping their numbers to four in the process. Though Casaya enjoyed feasting, Bruce complained of gastrointestinal problems, an event that would lead to his sudden departure in the future. Nonetheless, the once-problematic Casaya felt like they were a team.

By Day 16, the remaining six Casaya members welcomed the remnants of the rival tribe at their camp for a merger. This new tribe stayed at the old Casaya camp for the rest of the game.



  • In a rather interesting coincidence, each of the four starting tribes produced a representative in the final four. Cirie Fields became the representative of Casaya.
  • The second season of the Israeli version's merged tribe was also named Casaya.
  • None of the original four Casaya members were ever sent to Exile Island.
  • Out of the original Casaya tribe, Cirie was the only one to make the merge.
  • After the Schoolyard Pick, Casaya had two representatives from each original tribe. Aras and Bobby from Viveros, Danielle and Courtney from Bayoneta, Melinda and Cirie from original Casaya, and Shane from original La Mina. Shane was the only representative of original La Mina, but he was joined by Bruce after Melinda's elimination.