The Australian dugong (Dugong dugon) and Florida manatee (Trichechus manatus latirostris) are threatened species of aquatic mammals in the order Sirenia. Sirenian conservation and management actions would benefit from a more complete understanding of genetic diversity and population structure. Generally, species-specific microsatellite markers are employed in conservation genetic studies; however, robust markers can be difficult and costly to isolate. To increase the number of available markers, dugong and manatee microsatellite primers were evaluated for cross-species amplification. Furthermore, one manatee and four dugong novel primers are reported. After polymerase chain reaction optimization, 23 (92%) manatee primers successfully amplified dugong DNA, of which 11 (48%) were polymorphic. Of the 32 dugong primers tested, 27 (84%) yielded product in the manatee, of which 17 (63%) were polymorphic. Dugong and manatee primers were compared and the most informative markers were selected to create robust and informative marker-panels for each species. These cross-species microsatellite marker-panels can be employed to assess other sirenian populations and can provide beneficial information for the protection and management of these unique mammals.