Steller’s Sea Cow

Steller’s Sea Cow Scientific Classification
Scientific name
Hydrodamalis Gigas
Steller’s Sea Cow Physical Characteristics
Brown, Grey, Black
50 – 80 years
8000kg (8.8tons)
Steller’s Sea Cow Distribition

Steller’s sea cow was a massive, marine animal that very closely appeared like a manatee or dugong.”

This interesting animal was very first found in 1741 by a German biologist called Georg Steller. Its useful meat, skin and fat created humans to quest it right into termination by 1768.

Steller’s Sea Cow Realities

  • Besides soft grunts, this animal was totally mute
  • The Steller’s sea cow was pursued right into termination within 27 years of its preliminary exploration.
  • The dugong is the closest living family member of the Steller’s sea cow, and it is likewise near termination.
  • This animal had such a thick layer of blubber that they might not immerse themselves in the water.

Steller’s Sea Cow Scientific Name

The scientific name for the Steller’s sea cow is Hydrodamalis gigas It becomes part of the order Sirenia, which likewise consists of a number of manatee species and the taxonomical family Dugongidae. The Dugongidae family made use of to be rather varied, however its only making it through participant currently is the dugong.

The name “Hydrodamalis” is a mix of the Greek prefix “hydro-,” or “water,” and the Greek word “damalis,” which indicates “heifer” or “young bull.” Gigas is likewise an old Greek word that indicates “large.” This indicates that the scientific name approximately equates to “large water cow.”

The usual name of this animal originates from the truth that these animals were very first run into and recorded by the German biologist Georg Wilhelm Steller.

Steller’s Sea Cow Appearance

Like lots of various other species that endured from the Pleistocene period, the Steller’s sea cow was a titan amongst its taxonomical family.

While there are no totally managed samplings of these amazing animals, there are summaries, images and skeletal remains that can be examined for details.

Totally expanded, these animals would generally expand to be around 30 feet in size. For contrast, a totally expanded grown-up manatee generally just expands to be as much as 10 feet long.

Researchers do not recognize for certain precisely just how much a grownup of this species evaluated. Georg Steller taped 2 extremely various weight quotes: The very first had to do with 4 brief bunches, or 8,000 extra pounds, and the secondly had to do with 26 brief bunches, or 52,000 extra pounds. To aid you envision the distinction, one grown-up hippopotamus considers regarding 8,000 extra pounds. 4 totally expanded elephants created would certainly consider regarding 52,000 extra pounds. In truth, professionals presume that the real dimension of the Steller’s sea cow dropped someplace in the center of those quotes at regarding 10 brief bunches, or regarding 20,000 extra pounds. That’s almost equivalent to 3 grown-up- sized hippos.

They had thick, dark skin that was brown- black in shade, harsh to the touch and deeply pockmarked. They had extremely little body hair, however the within their fins were covered in a layer of difficult bristles.

Like various other animals in the order Sirenia, these animals had little, squat heads with wide top lips, little eyes and down- aiming noes. They likewise had stumpy front fins and forked tail flukes like the dugong.

One intriguing attribute of this animal is that it did not have teeth like the manatee species that exist today. Rather, they had a layer of tight, thick white bristles on their top lips and 2 difficult, flaky plates inside their mouths to aid with tearing and eating plant issue.

Steller's Sea Cow

Nicolas Primola/Shutterstock. com

Steller’s Sea Cow Actions

Almost whatever that researchers learn about these animals originates from the monitorings of Georg Steller.

He kept in mind that they were very social animals that stayed in little family husks. They were observed aiding hurt relative, and they likewise displayed safety habits like putting the young in the most safe setting to name a few herd participants. Dolphins and elephants likewise reveal these sorts of habits.

They were likewise virginal, and breeding generally occurred in very early springtime. Based upon his monitorings, Steller approximated that female sea cows just birthed one calf bone at once, and he thought that pregnancy took simply over a year. In maintaining with their social, family- oriented nature, Steller observed adult take care of brand-new calf bones, and the whole herd interacted to shield children.

Steller’s Sea Cow Environment

This animal was very first found in 1741 in a tiny part of the Bering Sea, which is cold almost year- round. Throughout the Pleistocene period, they would certainly have likely been located a lot additionally out right into Arctic and Pacific waters.

Their icy living problems created them to have a much thicker layer of blubber than a lot of manatee species today along with a thicker external layer of skin. The standard Steller’s sea cow had a difficult conceal that had to do with an inch thick and a blubber layer that depended on 4 inches thick.

Such a thick layer of fat made them extremely resilient, so they needed to survive on the surface area of the Bering Sea and might not completely immerse themselves.

Steller’s Sea Cow Diet

Like all various other associated species, these animals were herbivores. They endured on a diet of kelp and would generally invest most of their days grazing. They would just require to raise their go out of the water every couple of mins to take a breath prior to going back to grazing on different species of kelp that expanded near the surface area of the water.

Steller’s Sea Cow Predators and Dangers

While Steller kept in mind that grown-up sea cows safeguarded their young from damage, he did not state whether they had any kind of all-naturalpredators Professionals assume maybe feasible that killer whales or sharks might have attempted to take advantage of the sea cows, however it would certainly have been tough for either animal to effectively eliminate one.

Unfortunately, the hazard that created them to go extinct originated from humans. They were promptly identified as an incredibly useful asset, and they were greatly searched for their meat, hides and blubber.

Some professionals think that the population was currently alarmingly reduced when they were at first found, so they were pursued right into termination exceptionally promptly.

The last discovery of a Steller’s sea cow in the wild originated from a team of hair seekers in 1768, simply 27 years after they were very first found.

Steller’s Sea Cow Reproduction, Infants and Life-span

Georg Steller observed that female sea cows just had one collection of mammary glands, so he wrapped up that they just brought to life one calf bone per maternity. He claimed that breeding occurred in very early springtime, and the copulation occurred under the water. He observed that male sea cows utilized their front fins to keep the females throughout copulation.

Though none exist today, scientists assume that the ordinary life expectancy of a Steller’s sea cow was 50 to 80 years. The Florida manatee can live greater than 60 years, so this would certainly be a practical quote.

Steller’s Sea Cow Population

The Steller’s sea cow has actually been extinct considering that 1768 due to unrestrained human searching. At the time of its preliminary exploration in 1741, professionals think that there were just around 1,500 sea cows left in the Bering Sea.

Steller’s Sea Cow in the Zoo

However, this species has actually been extinct for over 2 centuries. Their closest living family member, the dugong, is near termination also, so there are just 3 in bondage worldwide.

Nonetheless, lots of zoos include manatee displays, and they are very closely pertaining to Steller’s sea cows.


  1. Wikipedia, Available here:,a%20fisherman’s%20net%20and%20treated.
  2. Brittanica, Available here:
  3. Bluebulb Projects, Available here:
  4. The Atlantic, Available here:
  5. EverythingWhat, Available here:
  6. Merriam-Webster, Available here:

Relate animals

Abyssinian Guinea Pig

They are one of the oldest breeds of guinea pig

Ackie Monitor

The ackie monitor has a spiny tail which it uses as in self-defense.


The Albertonectes had the longest neck out of other Elasmosaurids.

American Bully

Though the American bully was bred to look intimidating, it makes an extremely friendly family pet!

Latest Animal News