Mermaids are just a myth and they never existed, a US government scientific agency has said.
The timing of the claim by the US National Ocean Service of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) coincides with the Animal Planet show Mermaids: The Body Found, that was aired in May and explored whether there is "a kernel of truth that lives beneath the legend of the mythic mermaid".
Not so, said the National Ocean Service. "No evidence of aquatic humanoids has ever been found," the agency said on its website.
However, a NOAA spokesperson would not confirm that the post was in direct response to the show, which was presented in documentary format.
"The timing was around that time. I think the TV show came out around Memorial Day and we got a few of the questions [about mermaids]," Keeley Belva, spokesperson for National Ocean Service, told LiveScience. "Arguably, yes, the timing is tied to the documentary."