Locals, fishermen and tourists in the Israelian town of Kiryat Yam have been reporting repeated sightings of what they believe to be a mermaid, the mythological creature most often describe as half female, half fish.

mermaid

Shlomo Cohen is one of the first who reported such a sighting. Here’s what he had to say:

“I was with friends when suddenly we saw a woman laying on the sand in a weird way. At first I thought she was just another sunbather, but when we approached she jumped into the water and disappeared. We were all in shock because we saw she had a tail.”

This has been going on for months, and in an attempt to draw even more tourists and attention, the tourism board offered a one million dollars reward, which they believe will motivate people to try their luck.

This once again raises the question of repeated sightings of legendary creatures (Loch Ness, ring a bell?). What is it that makes people see pretty much the same thing. Is it the power of suggestion combined with some imagination? It could be an optical illusion, or an animal that’s already known, and people who want to see something else actually see something else. Well, one thing’s for sure – you really shouldn’t be spending what’s left of your vacation trying to spot a mermaid.

Enjoyed this article? Join 40,000+ subscribers to the ZME Science newsletter. Subscribe now!

Like us on Facebook

Your opinion matters -- voice it in the comments below!