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Dugongs Vs Manatees: What’s the Difference?

Dugongs Vs Manatees: What’s the Difference?

Dugongs Vs Manatees: What’s the Difference?

There are many similarities and differences between Dugongs and Manatees, but which is better? In this article, we’ll take a closer look at these two aquatic mammals to see what sets them apart.


Dugongs are quite different from manatees. Dugongs have a very long snout, and their teeth are very small. Dugongs also have a six-pack stomach that helps them digest food. Manatees have a smaller mouth, and their teeth are larger. Manatees also have two sets of jaws – one for eating and one for drinking.


There is a lot of debate about the classification of these two creatures, as they share some features, but also have a few important differences. Dugongs are actually more closely related to elephants and manatees are more closely related to hippos. The main difference between these creatures is that manatees are able to stay submerged for long periods of time, while dugongs are not so good at it.

Another key difference is that manatees have a layer of fat under their skin that helps them stay cool in warm water and can hibernate during cold winters. Dugongs do not have this layer and their skin is not very thick, so they can become overheated and die in hot weather. Finally, manatees have fiber-optic cables running through their brain and spinal cord that help them communicate with each other and with researchers who study them, while dugongs do not have these cables.

Dugongs and Manatee Survival

What’s the difference between a Dugong and a Manatee?

Dugongs and manatees are two different aquatic mammals that can be found in tropical and subtropical regions around the world. Dugongs are the larger of the two, reaching up to 10 feet long and weighing up to 1,000 pounds. Manatees, on the other hand, are smaller, reaching just 6 feet long and weighing around 300 pounds. However, there are some important differences between these two animals that you should know if you want to protect either one!

One big difference between Dugongs and Manatees is their diet. Dugongs are herbivores that eat mostly plants, while manatees are omnivores that eat both plants and other animals. This means that Dugongs are less likely to become injured by predators or get sick from eating contaminated food, since they have a wider variety of food sources to choose from.

Another big difference between Dugongs and Manatees is their respiratory system. Dugongs have a blowhole on top of their head that they use to breathe air underwater, while manatees have a tube-like respiratory system that goes down into their lungs.

Dugongs and Manatee Reproduction

Dugongs and manatees are two of the most fascinating creatures in the sea, but what’s the difference between them? Dugongs are more closely related to elephants and manatees to hippopotamuses; they share a common ancestor that lived around 55 million years ago.

Manatees are the largest aquatic mammals in the world, and can weigh up to 900 kilograms. They have a long snout and a thick tail that they use to prop themselves up while they eat, and they can stay submerged for up to two hours. Dugongs, on the other hand, are much smaller than manatees – they can weigh as little as 60 kilograms, and their snout is much shorter.

Dugongs are mainly found in tropical and subtropical waters, while manatees are found throughout the world’s oceans. Dugongs typically live in groups of 10-30 animals, while manatee groups can number in the hundreds. Dugongs are mainly herbivorous creatures that feed on clams, oysters, crabs, and other small marine creatures. Manatees, on the other hand, are mostly herbivorous but will also eat fish if available.


Dugongs and Manatee Behavior

Dugongs and manatees are two of the most well-known and beloved marine mammals. While they share some similarities, there are also a few important distinctions between the two species that can affect their behavior. Here’s a look at what distinguishes them, and some of the behaviors you’ll likely see from each.

Size Matters

Dugongs are the largest marine mammals in the world, reaching lengths of up to 23 feet (7 meters) and weighing up to 1,000 pounds (454 kilograms). Manatees, by comparison, are much smaller – the average size is around 8 feet (2.4 meters) long and weighs around 600 pounds (270 kilograms). This size difference impacts Dugong behavior in a few key ways. For one, Dugongs tend to be more passive than Manatees; they’re more likely to stay near shore or in sheltered areas. And while both species are capable of swimming powerfully, Dugongs are much slower swimmers than Manatees – which can make them easier targets for predators.

Eating Habits

One of the main ways that Dugongs and Manatees differ is their diet. Dugongs are herbivorous animals that consume mostly aquatic plants

Dugong Habitat

Dugongs and manatees inhabit different habitats. Dugongs live in warm, tropical waters and manatees live in colder waters. Dugongs are also generally larger than manatees.

There are several other differences between the two creatures, but these are the most important.

Dugong Diet

Dugongs are marine mammals that eat a diet that predominantly consists of vegetables and algae. Manatees, on the other hand, are herbivores that primarily feed on plants and aquatic vegetation.

The main difference between Dugongs and Manatees is their diets. Dugongs are herbivores that primarily feed on plants and aquatic vegetation. Manatees, on the other hand, are herbivores that primarily feed on plants and aquatic vegetation. Another difference between the two species is their size. Dugongs are much smaller than manatees, measuring up to six feet long and weighing around two hundred pounds.

Manatee Habitat

Dugongs vs Manatees: What’s the Difference?

If you’re asking about the difference between dugongs and manatees, you’re in for a bit of a surprise! They look so similar that it can be hard to tell them apart, but there are some key differences that set these two mammals apart. Here are five things to know about dugongs and manatees:

1. Dugongs are exclusively sea creatures. Manatees are actually land mammals, but they spend most of their lives in the water.

2. Dugongs are much larger than manatees. Dugongs can grow up to 6 meters long and weigh up to 1,500 kilograms. Manatees are less than half as big at 2 meters long and weigh around 350 kilograms.

3. Dugongs have a different skull shape than manatees. Dugongs have a more streamlined skull that helps them stay submerged longer while they eat and search for food underwater. The skull of a manatee is more rounded because they spend more time on land where their head is unprotected from the sun and rain.

4. Dugongs have four flippers instead of

Manatee Diet

Manatees are Filter Feeders and Dugongs are Herbivores.

Manatees feed on plant-based material that is filtered from the water column by their grazing proboscis. Some of the Manatee’s favorite foods include seagrass, aquatic plants, and algae. Dugongs feed on a variety of aquatic plants and animals that they find in the water column or on the sea floor.

The primary difference between manatees and dugongs is that manatees eat a primarily plant-based diet while dugongs eat a mixed diet including animal material. However, both animals are endangered and need our help to survive.


There are a few key differences between dugongs and manatees that you should be aware of if you’re ever planning on interacting with either one of these animals in the wild. For one, dugongs are much heavier than manatees, meaning they can move more slowly through the water. Additionally, dugongs have long, skinny tails that they use to help them maneuver through the water and to grasp objects. Manatees, on the other hand, have rounder tails and larger bodies that make them better swimmers. Finally, Dugongs are also less likely to exhibit aggressive behavior than manatees- in fact, Dugongs are considered to be some of the most gentle marine mammals in the world.