Many people often wonder whether or not mermaids really exist. These aquatic humanoid creatures have caused a lot of speculation throughout history about whether or not they are actually real. While most think that merpeople are nothing more than a myth created by tired and dehydrated sailors who were delusional from their time out to sea, others believe this species lives underwater and out of the prying eyes’ view.
When researching folklore across the globe, you will find references to mermaids in regions like Great Britain, Ireland, China, Korea, Russia, Japan, Thailand, and Zimbabwe. You have to wonder why so many different countries have come up with the same mystical creature concept, being worlds apart?
And then there are the reported sightings:
- In 1493, Christopher Columbus said he spotted three mermaids
- In 1608, one of Henry Hudson’s crew members reported seeing a mermaid in the Arctic Ocean
- The English pirate Blackbeard recorded in his logbook that he and his crew steered clear of certain areas because it was the mermaids’ territory
- In 1881, a Pennsylvania fisherman reported seeing a mermaid
- In 2009, a dozen of people reported seeing a mermaid leaping out of Haifa Bay
Throughout time, there wouldn’t be many to be brave enough to admit such a fantastical sighting to the public during earlier times. These are just some of the documented sightings. Imagine how many more have been seen and never told to another soul!
How do mermaids have babies?
There are essentially two theories about how mermaids reproduce. The first one claims that because merfolk have the lower part of fish, they’ll reproduce the same way fish do. Females lay eggs just like fish do, and males fertilize them immediately after.
The other theory takes into consideration the fact that mermaids have breasts, so they might have mammary glands. This would make them mammals. In this case, mermaids birth to live young, similar to dolphins. If so, merbabies are born knowing how to swim and grows on their mother’s milk.
Since mermaids are most similar to dolphins and manatees, we can assume that they birth their young. Furthermore, if we are relating mermaids to manatees, odds are merpeople are heavier than they are typically displayed in movies and animation.
To live in the deep ocean, a predominantly cold and dark region, merfolk would need blubber or fat to help sustain their body temperature. This idea of the size 0 mermaid doesn’t really make sense if you consider having to survive in their environment.
Where do Mermaids Live?
As merpeople are aquatic creatures, it makes sense that one should turn to the sea to find their residence. Most sightings of mermaids have occurred deep out in the waters, but some say that they can be found in rivers and lakes.
This means that there are a variety of merpeople – fresh and salt water bound. Similar to how there are freshwater and saltwater fish.
Can a mermaid live on land?
Technically, a mermaid is semi-aquatic. This means that they can spend some of their time out of water without feeling any repercussions. As long as they continue to consume enough water and remain cool enough, they should be perfectly fine.
However, it is critical for a mermaid to always remain close to the water. They should never wander too far from the sea. The last thing merfolk wants is to be disconnected from their life force.
Is Seeing A Mermaid Considered Good Luck?
Some believe that if you spot a mermaid while out to sea, it will offer you good luck. This makes sense considering sailors were often obsessed with finding one while out with their crew. In certain cultures, like in countries such as Trinidad and Tobago, merfolk would even grant people wishes once found.
However, in British folklore it is bad luck to come across a mermaid. So, people would not seek out these mythical creatures in fear of a disastrous future.
Are sirens and mermaids the same?
Sirens are comprised of a half-woman / half-bird body and have beautiful singing voices which they used to lure sailors in to their possession. By enchanted these sailors, they borderline possessed them into not being able to think about anything other than their voices. Eventually, the sailor’s ship would hit a rock, crash, and sink.
It’s unclear as to why sirens kill people. Some say it’s because they are cursed to die themselves should any man resist their voices. Others believe it’s because sirens enjoy eating men.
Mermaids, on the other hand, are half-fish / half-woman, but they lack singing abilities and never intentionally kill people or cause shipwrecks. So, the two are definitely not the same species.