Definition of dugong in English:


Line breaks: du¦gong
Pronunciation: /ˈduːgɒŋ
, ˈdjuː-/

noun (plural same or dugongs)

  • A sea cow found on the coasts of the Indian Ocean from eastern Africa to northern Australia. It is distinguished from the manatees by its forked tail.
    • Dugong dugon, family Dugongidae
    More example sentences
    • Genetic evidence suggests that the elephant's closest relatives in evolutionary terms are manatees and dugongs, herbivorous sea cows that live full-time in the water.
    • Dugongs and manatees make up the order Sirenia, so-named because dugongs and manatees are thought to have given rise to the myth of the mermaids or sirens of the sea.
    • A modern analog for this is the dugong from the Pacific Ocean.


early 19th century: based on Malay duyong.

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