Dugongs vs. Manatees
Dugongs vs. Manatees

The main difference between these two sea mammals’ characteristics is that dugongs and manatees are that dugongs have tail flukes with pointed projections that can be found in whale whereas manatees have a large, paddle-shaped horizontal tail that has only one lube moving up and down when the animal swims.

Comparison Chart

Basis of Distinction Dugongs Manatees
Definition The dugong is the smallest individual from the order of the Sirenia. It tail flukes with pointed projections. Manatees are huge, entirely oceanic, generally herbivorous marine vertebrates in some cases known as ocean bovines. Manatees have a large, paddle-shaped horizontal tail
Habitat Marsa Alam in Egypt, Bazaruto, Vilanculos in Mozambique, Northern Australia The Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, Amazon Basin, West Africa
Tail Size Flukes with pointed projections like in whale Large, horizontal, paddle-shaped
Nails Don’t have any nails Essential nails on forelimbs of West African and West Indian manatees only
Nostrils Nostrils of dugongs are placed further back on its head Nostrils of manatees are placed near the head
Mouths More pronounced mouth Less pronounced mouth
Teeth Pair if tusk-like incisors Don’t have incisors. Only check teeth
Social Circle Like to live solitary or in one pair only Social creature. Can have several partners
Fertility Rate Ten years Three years
Vulnerable Yes No
Scientific Name Dugong dugon Genus Trichechus

What is Dugongs?

The dugong is the smallest species from the order of the Sirenia. The name “Dugong” originates from the Malay word ‘duyong,’ which signifies “lady of the sea” or “mermaid.” The most obvious place to sea the dugongs is in northern Australian waters, where the greater part of their populace lives. Dugongs don’t see that well; rather they utilize their intense hearing. They encourage in the shallow waters on seagrass with the guide of coarse, delicate abounds, which cover the upper lip of their expansive and meaty nose.

Dugongs vs. Manatees
Dugongs vs. Manatees

Recall that they are firmly identified with elephants? Dugong males have little tusks, which they use amid the mating season to challenge different dugongs. Dugongs are found in Pacific waters and off the shoreline of Africa. These tranquil herbivores are the primary individuals from Sirenia that live only in salt water living spaces. Their eating regimen is genuinely constrained, comprising altogether of seagrass. Physically, dugongs can grow up to three meters long; have fluke-like tails like dolphins, and tusk-like incisors.

What is Manatees?

Manatees are huge, completely oceanic, generally herbivorous marine vertebrates in some cases known as ocean bovines. There are three main living types of Trichechidae, speaking to three of the four living species is Sirenia: the Amazonian manatee, the West Indian manatee, and the West African manatee. They measure up to 4.0 meters in length, weigh as much as 590 kilograms, and have paddle-like flippers. The name manatí originates from the Spanish “manatí,” got from the Caribbean word once in a while referred to as “manattouï.” The historical background is questionable, with associations having been made to Latin “manus,” and to a word utilized by the Taíno, pre-Columbian individuals of the Caribbean, signifying “bosom.” Manatees are found off the shore of Africa, additionally in the Caribbean and the Gulf of Mexico. They, similar to the dugongs, are likewise tranquil herbivores. However their weight control plans are less limited — they promptly sustain off of mangrove plants, green growth, and turtle grass. Manatees additionally infrequently possess freshwater, relocating to inland water sources amid winter when sea temperatures start to drop. Physically, manatees have a tendency to be bigger than dugongs, have paddle-like tails, generally short gags with adaptable upper lips that assistance with brushing, and no incisors.

Key Differences between Dugongs and Manatees

  1. Dugongs have a short but broad and downward facing trunk-like snout similar to a horse with a slit-like a mouth with an undivided upper lip. Manatees, on the other hand, have a shorter snout and divided upper light that means they can gather more food.
  2. Naturally, manatees are social creatures, and one male manatee may have several female partners. Whereas, dugongs are more solitary, have one mate and tend to live in pairs only.
  3. Manatees’ weight can range between 400 and 500 kg while dugongs average weight is 420 kg.
  4. Manatees are larger than dugongs and grow to a length of 3.6 meters while dugongs rarely grow larger than 3 meters.
  5. The average lifespan of dugongs is seventy years while manatees have average life expectancy of forty years only.
  6. Dugongs cannot tolerate freshwater. Dugongs are strictly marine mammals, but manatees migrate between marine and freshwater.
  7. The age of sexual maturity of dugongs is between four to seven years that is five to nine years in the case of manatees.
  8. Dugongs are primarily threatened by the destruction of seagrass habitats and bycatch. While manatees are threatened by adverse temperature and vessel strikes.
  9. Manatees have wrinkled and rough skin while dugongs have smooth skin.
  10. According to the conservation status of IUCN, dugongs are more vulnerable than manatees.

Video Explanation