Mermaids in Cambodia

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  • #152636
    Avatar of Powm
    Powm
    Participant

    I’ve heard from a number of elders that mermaids used to exist in Cambodia. One guy said that he used to eat them! ew Has anyone else heard about this?

    #152651
    Avatar of funtastikSofia
    funtastikSofia
    Participant

    don’t you mean half tail and half body? than, how can you eat a mermaid? your friend must be some giant…

    just a question to ponder about.

    mermaid don’t exists, it just a fairy-tale story that Walt Disney creates for young children especially young girls. how can anyone believes in mermaid?

    that’s like asking, do you believe in elf? there are lots of little elves still exists in Ireland but i doubted that it’s true.

    EDiT: elves are cute, by the way.

    #152663
    Avatar of soma
    soma
    Participant

    [i]Originally posted by funtastikSofia[/i]
    don’t you mean half tail and half body? than, how can you eat a mermaid? your friend must be some giant…

    just a question to ponder about.

    mermaid don’t exists, it just a fairy-tale story that Walt Disney creates for young children especially young girls. how can anyone believes in mermaid?

    that’s like asking, do you believe in elf? there are lots of little elves still exists in Ireland but i doubted that it’s true.

    EDiT: elves are cute, by the way.

    Mermaid is not existed only in the fairy tale from Disney. It universal myhth and legend. In the Ramayana story also has a scene where Hannuman encountered sex with mermaid also. khmer has alot of story about mermaid.whether it really existed or not we don’t know. Just like the mystery of lochness monster.

    #152675
    Avatar of der_besessen
    der_besessen
    Participant

    [i]Originally posted by soma[/i]

    [quote]
    [i]Originally posted by funtastikSofia[/i]
    don’t you mean half tail and half body? than, how can you eat a mermaid? your friend must be some giant…

    just a question to ponder about.

    mermaid don’t exists, it just a fairy-tale story that Walt Disney creates for young children especially young girls. how can anyone believes in mermaid?

    that’s like asking, do you believe in elf? there are lots of little elves still exists in Ireland but i doubted that it’s true.

    EDiT: elves are cute, by the way.

    Mermaid is not existed only in the fairy tale from Disney. It universal myhth and legend. In the Ramayana story also has a scene where Hannuman encountered sex with mermaid also. khmer has alot of story about mermaid.whether it really existed or not we don’t know. Just like the mystery of lochness monster.[/quote]

    The khmer name for that mermaid was Sovan-Maccha!

    Also check this out:

    http://www.enn.com/news/wire-stories/2002/05/05242002/reu_47340.asp

    [Message last modified 11-07-2003 04:47pm by der_besessen]

    #152686
    Avatar of ambientronica
    ambientronica
    Participant

    [i]Originally posted by Powm[/i]
    I’ve heard from a number of elders that mermaids used to exist in Cambodia. One guy said that he used to eat them! ew Has anyone else heard about this?

    this guy is funny. yes, mermaid exist as well as sea monster.

    #152699
    Avatar of der_besessen
    der_besessen
    Participant

    [i]Originally posted by Powm[/i]
    I’ve heard from a number of elders that mermaids used to exist in Cambodia. One guy said that he used to eat them! ew Has anyone else heard about this?

    Are you talking about mermaid prawns bong?

    #152712
    Avatar of bbsblood
    bbsblood
    Participant

    I use to heard their is a mermaid in cambodia. But it was dead along the shore
    of Cambodia. I seen it in the newspaper back in the 80′s.
    It was half fish head and body of a woman from the hip down.

    #152726
    Avatar of bbsblood
    bbsblood
    Participant

    Mermaid myths and travellers help rare Mekong dolphin

    By Chhay Sophal

    KAMPI, Cambodia, May 22 (Reuters) – Ripples break the bottle-green surface of the Mekong River as a pair of dolphins emerge momentarily from the cloudy depths of Southeast Asia’s foremost river.

    Their silvery dorsal fins glisten in the setting sun, then disappear with a splash, leaving only echoes of the high-pitched clicking of their unique sonar language.

    In Cambodia, fishermen still remember when rare Irrawaddy dolphins were a relatively common sight in rivers and waterways as far flung as the great Tonle Sap lake in Cambodia’s rugged northwest.

    Nowadays dolphin numbers have dwindled. The Mekong River as it meanders through northeastern Cambodia is one of the few places they can still be seen as the massive waterway winds its 4,300 kilometre (2,690 miles) way toward the sea.

    Fishing, hunting and increased river traffic have wreaked havoc on the dolphin’s habitat, but a mix of ancient Cambodian legend and local action offers these rare aquatic animals a chance of survival.

    More than 1,000 dolphins inhabited Cambodian rivers and lakes before the country lurched into bloody civil war in the 1970s, said Touch Seang Tana, Cambodia’s top dolphin expert at the Department of Fisheries in Phnom Penh.

    Only 80 dolphins are estimated to remain, living in the stretch of Mekong River from Cambodia’s northeastern Kratie province to the far-northern border with Laos.

    “Before the war, hundreds of dolphins were seen in the Tonle Sap river. Now, no one talks about dolphins there,” said Touch Seang Tana.

    The Tonle Sap joins the Mekong near the capital Phnom Penh.

    TARGET PRACTICE

    Little is known about the Irrawaddy dolphin which grows up to 2.75 metres (nine feet) in length and is found in coastal and freshwater regions from South Asia to Northern Australia.

    Scant information has kept the dolphin off the world’s endangered species lists but some authorities believe they are in general decline.

    In Cambodia the decline began three decades ago.

    During Cambodia’s civil war and the 1975-1979 Khmer Rouge “killing fields” years, Mekong dolphins were shot for target practice or hunted like their relatives the whale for oil to grease weapons of war.

    “Khmer Rouge soldiers killed dolphins to use the oil in their motor boats,” said Touch Seang Tana.

    The killing continued under successive regimes that ruled Cambodia after the Khmer Rouge, said Seam Kin, deputy director of fisheries in Kratie province — the last large dolphin habitat in Cambodia.

    To catch fish, Cambodians — who after years of warfare had more weapons than fishing nets — have lobbed hand grenades into rivers or shot electric currents through the water, killing dolphins in the process.

    Many more were trapped accidentally in fishing nets.

    But mythology and taboo have always prevented them being hunted as food to extinction.

    HUMAN SOUL IN DOLPHIN SKIN

    Fisherman Seng Roeun casts his net from the cramped confines of his boat hollowed from the trunk of a giant tree.

    Late in April the catch is good said Seng Roeun, 36, and though dolphins are blamed for eating too many fish, locals never intentionally kill the revered creatures.

    There is a Cambodia story of a fair maiden who cast herself into the swirling Mekong River to escape an arranged marriage to a giant magical python.

    She was swallowed by the river, but soon returned as the giant mermaid-like dolphin with human-size eyes, wide smile and enchanting sonorous sounds.

    But there is more reward for protecting dolphins than just good luck, said Seng Roeun, who now earns a princely $5 each day taking groups of young backpacking tourists out in his boat to see the dolphins.

    In a country where many subsist on less than a dollar a day, the modest amounts of money spent by the tourists has become key in local dolphin conservation efforts.

    “We must protect the dolphins, they improve our living conditions,” said 25-year-old fisherman Pho Phal.

    DAM DANGER

    Bonding dolphins, visitors and local fishing communities was the brainchild of aid organisation Oxfam, which began dolphin conservation in 1996 in Kratie and further north in Stung Treng province in 1998.

    Dolphin numbers are now stable in both provinces, said Oxfam’s Sam Sovanna. But the threat to the aquatic mammals is far from gone.

    Danger looms from events unfolding beyond Cambodia’s borders upstream and downstream in the Mekong and its tributaries where Vietnam, Laos, Thailand and China have built or are planning dozens of hydroelectric dams.

    The concrete barriers provide vast areas with electricity but also block the primordial patterns of fish migration and the river’s seasonal ebb and flow that synchronises the cycle of fish breeding and spawning.

    Cambodians and Irrawaddy dolphins alike rely on those fish for food, and in the dry season the Mekong river is now dropping to levels unknown before in Cambodia, said Chhlorm Yeng, project manager for Oxfam’s community fisheries project in Stung Treng.

    “If the water is low, the fish will go and the dolphins cannot feed,” Chhlorm Yeng said.

    Says Oxfam’s Sam Sovanna: “When there is no water, there are no fish. With no fish, there are no dolphins.”

    (Additional reporting Kevin Doyle)

    05/21/02 21:45 ET

    Copyright 2002 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Reuters content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Reuters. Reuters shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon. All active hyperlinks have been inserted by AOL.

    #152740
    Avatar of MisterMeow
    MisterMeow
    Participant

    In Khmer mermaids are called Matchanu. There is a legend of mermaids that live under a waterfall in some place in Cambodia. I doubt it’s true. :| Too bad.

    #152753
    Avatar of MisterMeow
    MisterMeow
    Participant

    Irrawady Dolphins mistaken as mermaids? Mostl likely no.

    There is another legend about dolphins in the mekong. I forget what it was about. Anyways, Khmers would never intentionally harm the dolphins cos they have a deep respect for the dolphins, it was something in the legend that concieved this thought. Though, all that changed during the Khmer Rouge era. There is an interesting article about how the Khmer Rouge killed the Irrawady dolphins for their blubber, try Google. Today it’s the traps used by the fishermen that is putting these dolphins in danger.

    [Message last modified 11-07-2003 02:07pm by MisterMeow]

Viewing 10 posts - 1 through 10 (of 25 total)