ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Mermaids and Aquatic Apes

Updated on April 18, 2017

Mythical image of mermaid

Our Aquatic Past

On the face of it, both the Aquatic Ape Theory and mermaids are about aquatic humans and so from this point of view, both concepts are very similar. But the former is a scientific theory while the latter is supposed to be a myth.

Science also claims that it is impossible to have a creature that is half fish and half human. This then makes these two different concepts are as far apart as you can get, when viewed like this, but only if we assume that mermaids are really half fish and half human

For those who don’t know what the Aquatic Ape Theory is: It explains why humans, unlike any other ape species, has lost its hair, walks upright, talks and has a large brain, through living in an aquatic environment, foraging for marine food. The suggestion is that our ape ancestors, millions of years ago, came down from trees and began to forage for food, like shellfish and seaweed on beaches or wade in the shallows

When wading, an ape is forced to stand upright, so evolution would favor apes who are better able to do this, as they are more able to stand upright in the water, gathering food, for a longer time. If an ape becomes used to standing upright in the water, they may also begin to do the same on land, where they find this has an advantage.

It would certainly be beneficial to mothers with newborns who will find they have their arms free to carry their child and even feed it at her breasts while she is walking. Also by standing upright she is able to carry marine food, in her hands, from the shallows to land for any young who have been weaned

Venus Of Willendorf

Were these ancient fat women female divers?
Were these ancient fat women female divers?

Subcutaneous Fat

Then as the shallows are over-fished, these apes would be forced to move out into deeper waters and the apes who can duck their heads underwater and hold their breaths would have an advantage. In time, these apes will also start to swim underwater, to forage for food in even deeper waters.

Wet fur is not a good insulator in water, so evolution would favour fatter apes with less hair. This is because, fat or blubber is used by many marine mammals, like seals, dolphins and whales, to keep warm in the water.

At the same time, ape fur is useless in the water, for insulation and a drag when swimming or even wading, this would also favor apes with less hair. So over evolutionary time this would be the reason humans lost their fur.

Marine food is very rich in brain food like Omega-3 fatty acids and iodine, and this would allow humans to developed far larger brains than any other ape. On the beach there would be coconut trees and it seems that the fat in coconut is also an important brain food. Learning to hold their breath underwater and so learning conscious breath control, also helped teach humans to talk

Ama Diver

Japanese Ama Diver
Japanese Ama Diver

Breath-Holding Divers

Even though humans became human through living in a marine environment, at some point in our more recent past humans began to leave the shoreline and began to live away from the sea.

It seems that humans didn't become as aquatic as we see in mermaid myths. For this reason, mermaids, with fish tails, would not be aquatic apes as some people have suggested.

Although most people tend to think of mermaids of as a woman with a fishtail, if we look at many of the mermaid sighting in the past we find in a lot of them, the mermaids have legs. So what we think of as mermaids were only ordinary women swimming in the sea.

In my book and blog,(see below) and my video, Mermaids Are Real. I have explained that I believe that mermaids are female divers like the ama and haenyo of Japan and Korea. And like in the Aquatic Ape Theory these divers forage for marine food like shellfish and seaweed in the sea. So these divers are following a lifestyle that probably goes back millions of years.

It is also of interest that the female body is more aquatic than the male body, as the human female has less body hair and more subcutaneous fat than males, keeping their bodies warmer in the water. This is why the traditional breath holding divers of Japan and Korea are mostly women, as their bodies are more suited to this lifestyle than men. This would also explain why reports of mer-people in Europe and other parts of the world are mostly of females and not males, as they would have been like the ama and haenyo of today

17th Century Drawing Of A Mermaid.

Mermaids And Witches

So why do we not read about female divers in history? The reason it seems is that female divers or mermaids were the main breadwinners of their families and patriarchal doctrines like Christianity, Islam and Confucianism greatly disapproved of this

The Confucian government of China banned female divers and in Europe mermaids were caught up on the witch hunts of the middle ages, and being a female diver was enough to condemn woman as a witch

Farmers V Mermaids

So in our evolution from ape to human it seems we were all mer-people living on marine food. Though because women’s bodies are more aquatic than men’s bodies it suggests that women foraged more in the water while men foraged more on land.

This only changed when some humans found they could survive foraging on land and moved away from the coast. Then later farming was invented and the first civilisations were created. But it seems not all people done this and continued their very ancient way of life diving for marine food

Unfortunately this way of life was later to clash with the patriarchal doctrines who disapproved of women being the main breadwinner of the family. So not only were mermaids or female divers banned they were also written out of history. So the only evidence for this ancient way of life is mermaid myths and legends. As well as ama and haenyo divers that have survived into modern times.

First part of my seven part mermaid series

© 2012 William Bond

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      marc verhaegen 

      4 years ago

      Thanks a lot. Better terms than ‘aquatic ape’ are Littoral Theory or Coastal Dispersal Model, google ‘greg laden blog verhaegen’: rather than running over savannas, Homo populations during the Ice Ages followed coasts & rivers, where they collected very different sorts of waterside & shallow aquatic plant & animal foods.

      Human Evolution soon publishes the proceedings of the symposium ‘Human Evolution: Past, Present & Future’ in London 8-10 May 2013:

      SPECIAL EDITION PART 1 (end 2013)

      Introduction - Peter Rhys-Evans

      1. Human's Association with Water Bodies: the ‘Exaggerated Diving Reflex’ and its Relationship with the Evolutionary Allometry of Human Pelvic and Brain Sizes - Stephen Oppenheimer

      2. Human Ecological Breadth: Why Neither Savanna nor Aquatic Hypotheses can Hold Water - JH Langdon

      3. Endurance Running versus Underwater Foraging: an Anatomical and Palaeoecological Perspective - Stephen Munro

      4. Wading Hypotheses of the Origin of Human Bipedalism - Algis Kuliukas

      5. The Aquatic Ape Evolves: Common Misconceptions and Unproven Assumptions about the So-Called Aquatic Ape Hypothesis - Marc Verhaegen

      6. The Epigenetic Emergence of Culture at the Coastline: Interaction of Genes, Nutrition, Environment and Demography - CL Broadhurst & Michael Crawford

      SPECIAL EDITION PART 2 (begin 2014) with 12 contributions

    • wabond profile imageAUTHOR

      William Bond 

      5 years ago from England

      Personally Raven Helf, I think most mythical creatures do have some basis of fact. Like unicorns were probably just another name for a rhinoceros. While others might have been fossils of extinct animals ancient people have dug up and speculated about what they were.

    • raven heft profile image

      Veronica~ 

      5 years ago from somewhere im not suppose to be.

      What do you think about other mythical creatures?

    • wabond profile imageAUTHOR

      William Bond 

      6 years ago from England

      Thank you Livhappy

    • livhappy profile image

      Josh Schaitel and Olivia Alverson 

      6 years ago

      You have fantastic views on this I love it. Definitely got me thinking

    • wabond profile imageAUTHOR

      William Bond 

      6 years ago from England

      My personal opinion on the Animal Planet program was that it was a hoax, you can read more about this at. -https://reelrundown.com/tv/theanimalplanetmermaidh...

    • profile image

      Brandon Ward 

      6 years ago

      Yes, that would explain why we couldn't find the missing link on land. I watched a show on Discovery Channel about Mermaids being caught on an audio recorder by scientists, and then the US military were using some type of new super sonic weapon that would kill anything in the path of it, and it happened to beach tons of whales, and something that couldn't be explained, it had a body structure somewhat like a humans, but also had a tail like a seal, and it had bones in the tail. It made me think about so much.

    • profile image

      Kimberly Llewellyn 

      6 years ago

      I love this. I always called this, the lost aquatic nexus. Meaning the "missing link" was not on land, but rather in the water! :)

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)