Anatomy Of A Mermaid
I am sure that most mermaid sightings could be explained away as being seals. However, there are two cases from the north of Scotland where (if you believe it) they got to examine the mermaids closely.
One was around the Isle of Yell where fishermen (who should know what a seal looks like) brought a mermaid on board. She measured three feet in length and "She offered no resistance nor attempted to bite, but she moaned piteously." They kept her on their boat for three hours before allowing her to dive back into the sea and described her as having bristles extending from her head to her shoulders that could be raised or lowered.
On the Isle of Benbeculla a mermaid was killed and buried. It was described such: "The upper part of the creature was about the size of a well-fed child of three or four years of age, with abnormally developed breasts." . Her hair was dark, glossy and long. Her skin was soft and white. (Somehow this description of it being like a 3 - 4 year old child with full breasts just makes a lot of mermaid drawings I have seen seem very very wrong).
Russian mermaids seem a bit differant if this expereince is anything to go by. ‘He saw giant beings rising up from below. They were milky-white, but with humanoid faces, and something like fish tails.
It raises a few questions. Are the witnesses reliable and could they have been something else?