Home Page .................DUGONG (Seacow)
click for info on pic

The Dugong (sometimes refered to as a "Seacow") is a mammal, that is, it suckles its young.
Dugongs are large grey mammals which spend their entire lives in the sea. Though Acquatic it breathes air through lungs and has live babies not eggs like fish
Dugongs swim by moving their broad spade-like tail in an up and down motion, and by use of their two flippers.

Physical Description
click for info on pic The Dugong may reach 3m in length and weigh almost 500 kgs. They have a thick layer of fat giving them a distinctly rotund posture, small paddle-like flippers positioned far forward on the body and a broad, flattened, powerful tail that resembles the tail of whale.

The ochre brown skin of a Dugong appears smooth, but a really close view reveals a rough surface covered in pits from which grow short, thick hairs.
Dugongs have 2 nostrils near the top of their heads on a "fleshy lip", which can curl up to make breathing easier on the surface click for info on pic

In Australia, Dugongs swim in the shallow coastal waters of northern Australia were they find protection from large waves and storms. Dugongs surface only to breathe, and never come on to land. They like to live in large herds, but due to declining numbers are often now found in smaller "family" groups of between 1 and 3 Dugongs

click for info on pic Female Dugongs give birth underwater to a single calf every three to seven years. Birth takes place in shallow water and the baby dugong is able to swim to the top of the water for its first breath. Baby dugongs are about 100 to 120cm long and weigh 20 to 30 kg. The calf stays with its mother, drinking milk from her teats and following close by until 18-24 months of age.
Dugongs reach adult size between 9 and 17 years of age, and have a lifespan similar to humans,if left alone

location Map Numbers & Location - Australia
The largest remaining dugong population in the world. In 1991 the northern Australian population was estimated at approximately 70,000 (??) with 12,500 in the Torres Straits and 1,700 in the northern Great Barrier Reef.

Dugongs are slow-moving and have little protection against predators. Being large animals, however, only large sharks, Saltwater Crocodiles and Killer Whales are a danger to them.
Dugong (Sea Cow) Males have ivory tusks used for fighting during male-male rivalry as well for uprooting seagrasses. Young Dugongs hide behind their mothers when in danger.

click for info on pic click for info on pic Diet
Dugongs are sometimes called "Sea Cows", because they graze on seagrasses. These marine plants look like grass growing on a sandy sea floor in shallow, warm water. Dugongs eat large amounts of seagrass, leaving behind feeding trails of bare sand and uprooted seagrass.

Conservation Status
Dugongs are a protected species in Australia, only traditionally hunted by the Aborigines. Dugongs only live where thee is seagrass, which is being destroyed by dredging and farm soil being washed into the sea, as well as pollution Dugongs like dolphins are also accidental victims to large net fishing On our Great Barrier Reef the Dugong population in 1987 was approax 3,500, in 4 years (1991) the ppulation was halved to 1,700 Dugongs are definitly an endanged species and are close to extinction as can be testified by the world wide numbers below

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Arabian (Persian) Gulf hosts the world's second largest population of dugong, thought to number at least 5,000 to 6,000. Red Sea estimate is about 4,000 East Africa from Somalia down to Mozambique, occur in hundreds, Pacific Ocean Vanuatu (estimated population 400), Palau (under 200), the Solomons etc. Southern Asia very small numbers in Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Myanmar, Papua-New Guinea, Philippines

LINKS... thanks to NATHALIE from Kathmandu, Nepal
Facts about Dugongs(Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority)
Dugongs in the United Arab Emirates (UAE)

Ants (Green Tree Ant).... Bandicoot (Long Nosed).... Bilby.... Bogong Moth.... Bottlenose Dolphin.... Bridled Nailtail Wallaby.... Brolga.... Cassowary.... Crocodile (Salt Water).... Cuscus.. Cuttlefish.. Dingo..... Dugong.... Eastern Snake Necked Turtle.... Echidna.... Emu.... Flying Fox (Grey-Headed).... Frilled Necked Lizard.... Furseal (Australian).... Galah.... Goanna.... Great White Shark.... Kingfishers & Kookaburras.... Koala.... Kowari.... Leadbeater's Possum.... Lumholtz Tree Kangaroo.... Lyrebird.... Magpie.... Mallee Fowl.... Numbat.... Owls.... Oystercatcher Parrot.... Pelican (Australian).... Penguin (Little or Fairy).... Phascogale.... Platypus.... Pygmy Possum.... Quokka.... Quoll (Spotted Tailed).... Rainbow Lorikeet.... Red Kangaroo.... Sawfish.... Sea Eagle (White Bellied).... Seadragons.... Seastars & Crown of Thorns.... Southern Right Whale.... Sugar Glider.... Sulphur Crested Cockatoo.... Tasmanian Devil.. Tasmanian Pademelon.... Thorny Devil.... Thylacine (Tasmanian Tiger).... Tree Frog (Blue Mountains).... Western Swamp Tortoise.... Wallaroo.... Wombats x 3.... Yabby....

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