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Discussion in 'Update & Idea Pool' started by RUBILITA, Sep 16, 2019.

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    RUBILITA Someday Author


    They are very large animals, but very docile and calm. Dugongs are the only 100% vegetarian marine mammals. In order to maintain size, they need to eat approximately 50 kg of algae every day. The shape of the face and the upper lip are perfectly adapted for feeding on the ocean floor.


    The dugong or sea cow as it’s also called is a large sea mammal being one of 4 living species of the order Sirenia.
    Measuring up to 11 feet or 3.4 meters long and weighing in at 2000 lbs or 1 ton the Dugong while having flippers and a flat tail like a whale, are more closely related to an elephant.
    A close but extinct relative to the dugong is the steller's sea cow. This aqua behemoth was multiple times larger than the dugong.
    They live in both groups and by their own, when grouped with others they’ll use a handful of unique sounds to communicate. These noises come in the form of squeaky chirps and barks.
    Their large heavy bones keep them submerged underwater, while their lungs on their backs keep them in a horizontal alignment, ideal for swimming. Their swim speed is slow only 6 miles or 10 km/h at a normal pace. They are able to max out though at around 14 miles or 22 and ½ km /h.
    The dugong reach sexual maturity between age 9 and 15. Between age 12 and 15 the dugong will develop tusks which are usually only visible on the males. Females will be pregnant for a full year before giving birth to their babies which happens every 3 to 7 years. A strong bond is created between the mother and baby which lasts 18 months before the calf is released on it’s own. Provided there is an ample food supply, the dugong will live up to 70 years old.
    Residing in waters around japan, the Philippines, east africa, Australia and the red sea this creature will spend hours grazing on the ocean floor. Sea grass is there food of choice of which they will eat around 70 lbs or 32 kg a day of. To avoid eating the sand that comes with their grassy lunch, the dugong shake their head from side to side releasing most of the sand from the grass before consumption.
    Many of them live off the coast of the United Arab Emirates. Dubai is known for their man made islands which are created by large ships pumping tons of sand into a single spot. All this coastline development is killing the sea grass which is vital for the survival of the dugong. This marine mammal needs to consume a plethora of this low nutrient sea grass just to keep themselves nourished.
    Their numbers have dropped drastically as a result of not only the coastal development but oceanic chemical pollution, getting struck by boats and getting caught in fishing nets. Abu Dhabi has stepped up and created a protected area, where all the dugong hang out, that is free from tourism, development and fishing. Now protected by law, the Dugongs numbers have yet to recover. The human threat isn’t all they have to worry about killer whales, crocodiles and sharks all enjoy the dugong as meal.
    Currently the largest population of dugong is in the red sea followed 2nd by the threatened population off the coast of Abu Dhabi.

    Last edited: Sep 17, 2019
    kiras likes this.

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