March 3rd……..

On this day, Christopher Columbus spotted three aquatic creatures off the Dominican coast and mistook them for mermaids. He described them in his journal as “not half as beautiful as they are painted.”

Scientists believe that most of history’s mermaid sightings have actually been encounters with manatees, slow-moving mammals of the deep with bulbous bodies and humanlike eyes. In the right light and the wrong mind, the manatee’s shape can be mistaken for the familiar female hourglass—especially to sailors who have gone months without seeing a woman.

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