Sea Cows | Sirenia
Sirenia also known as Sea-Cows, is the order of marine herbivorous mammals that are known for their large and round bodies. A Sirenia typically has a fusiform body and heavy bones to reduce drag while they swim through the water. A Sirenia is slow-moving, has a thin layer of fat, and has strong lips to successfully pull out seagrass for consumption. A Sirenia is native to swamps, rivers, and the marine wetlands within the Atlantic Ocean, the Amazon Basin, Eastern Africa, the Indian Ocean, and northeastern Australia. The average lifespan of Sirenia is between 50 to 70 years.
The characteristics of Sirenia include having a robust body form as well as thick skin with very little hair. Sirenia also have 2 nostrils either at the top or front of their muzzle. Sirenia have no ear pinnae as well as no hind limbs and a horizontally flattened tail.
Sirenians are vegetarians and obtain food by feeding on seagrasses as well as other marine plants. Sirenians gather food by being bottom-feeders and typically eat only what lives on the ocean floor while others feed by swimming from the water’s surface to the bottom of the water’s floor.
The greatest threats on Sirenia include human activities such as hunting, killing fishers, as well as collisions with boats and ships. Natural factors that are threats to Sirenia include predation, severe climatic events, infectious diseases, and microparasites. All these factors serve as threats to the Sirenian population.