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A mermaid is a "supposedly" legendary aquatic creature with the upper body of a female human and the tail of a fish. They appear in the folklore of many cultures worldwide and were mentioned as long ago as 1000 years BC. A Merman is the male equivalent. Many will be familiar with the Hans Christian Anderson story "The Little Mermaid" or indeed the Disney film adaptation.

Frequently associated with storms and shipwrecks and leading ships astray onto the rocks with their magical singing these were frequently referred to as "Sirens" , but Mermaids have also featured in some benevolent tales of the mermaids teaching humans the cures for certain ailments and leading them to safe waters.

In 1493 Christopher Colombus, sailing off the coast of Hispaniola, reported seeing three female forms and two further sightings were recorded near Vancouver and Victoria between 1870 and 1890. There were five sightings near Pennsylvania in1881 and as recently as 2009 dozens reported seeing one leaping out of Haifa Bay the Israeli town of Kiryat Yam offered a reward to anyone providing proof of the creatures existence. In 2112 workers working on two reservoir dams in Zimbabwe down-tooled stating that the Mermaids had hounded them away from the sites. This was repoted by the Minister for Water resources.