Dugong

Dugong
Bible occurrence: Exo 25:5; 26:14; 35:7, 23; 36:19; 39:334; Num 4:6, etc.

This was the animal that God directed the Israelites to use in making the covering for the tabernacle. Shoes of women were also made of them (Eze 16:10). There is a confusion here by the translators as to what the Hebrew tachash (Latin taxus, badger), and most probably the correct translation is “seal skins” which is abundant in the Sinai peninsula and Red Sea, or the dugong which is plentiful in the shallow waters of the Red Sea.

The dugong is a marine animal of 12 to 30 feet long, something like between a whale and a seal, never leaving the water and easily caught. It grazes on seaweed, and is known as Halicore tabernaculi. There are badgers in Palestine but its small skin hide would prove difficult to use as a covering for so large a tent.

Source: [DCox]