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see sireniansirenian
or sea cow,
name for a large aquatic mammal of the order Sirenia. Living sirenians are the dugong and the manatee, both found in warm, shallow waters in sheltered regions, where they feed on seaweeds and seagrasses.
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(Dugong dugon), an aquatic mammal, the sole representative of the genus Dugong of the order Sirenia. It normally attains a length of 2.5-3 m, with males weighing about 170 kg and females about 140 kg. The small and barely mobile head merges with the spindle-shaped trunk ending with a horizontal bilobate fin. The forelimbs are supple flippers. Of hind limbs only rudimentary pelvic bones, concealed in the muscles, remain. The coarse skin is dark leaden or brown in color and covered with sparse hairs. Both jaws have five or six molars on each side, cylindrical in form and lacking enamel; in addition, the males have two tusklike upper incisors 6-7 cm long.

The Dugong lives in the coastal waters of eastern Africa, southern Asia, the Moluccas, the Philippines, the Malay Archipelago, New Guinea, and Australia, sometimes entering the mouths of rivers. The Dugong lives in groups of three to six animals or in pairs and feeds on aquatic plant life. The female gives birth to a single offspring. It is hunted, but its numbers have greatly decreased.



a whalelike sirenian mammal, Dugong dugon, occurring in shallow tropical waters from E Africa to Australia: family Dugongidae
References in periodicals archive ?
In dugong stranding reports to us, it appears that there was none in a long time.
EAD, with support from TOTAL and TOTAL ABK, has been studying and monitoring the local dugong population since 1999.
Each image will indicate the location of each dugong via GPS, allowing C3 to map the sightings and get a clear idea of the population in the area, timings of sightings, migration patterns, etc, and will enable the team to put together recommendations for future protection areas.
During the same day it was reported that in the same area another dead dugong was present which had been there for over a month.
While whales and dolphins are adored by the public and receive attention from environmentalists, few are aware of other aquatic mammals such as manatees and dugongs which rely on mangrove habitat.
Fuentes' research into the green, hawksbill and flatback turtles and well as dugongs in the northern GBR and Torres Strait is seeking to establish priorities for the management of marine megafauna to increase their resilience to climate change.
The dugong is recognized as a natural treasure by the Japanese government and is also protected under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.
Endangered marine turtles live, breed and forage in the area, as do dugongs, also endangered, with around 20 per cent of the UAE's 3,000 strong dugong population using the area.
Wandihnu and the Old Dugong is a softcover children's picturebook about a young Australian girl who has lived her whole life in the city of Sydney, and now spends her first summer visiting her Aka (grandmother) on Badu Island, a place with a different customs and a traditional language called Kala Lagaw Ya.
Dirk, owner of the Dugong Dive Centre, is talking about a ten-year dugong protection program that he manages in partnership with Club Paradise, an upscale eco-resort where his dive center is based.
Rod Kennett, Project Coordinator; Daniel Oades, Project Officer, Kimberley Land Council; Frank Loban, Project Liaison Officer, Torres Strait Regional Authority; Lachlan Sutherland, Regional Facilitator, Torres Strait Regional Authority; Bradley Wilson, Project Officer, Carpentaria Land Council Aboriginal Corporation; Djawa Yunuping, Director, Dhimurru Land Management Aboriginal Corporation; Barry Hunter, Cape York Balkanu Development Corporation; Graham Friday, Senior Ranger, li-Anthawirriyarra Sea Rangers; Steve Johnson, Coordinator, li-Anthawirriyarra Sea Rangers (participants in the north Australia wide Marine Turtle and Dugong Project coordinated by the North Australian Indigenous Land and Sea Management Alliance)
The sailors may have thought the dugong s head and dolphin-like tail were the body of a mermaid.