There are seven species of mermaids in Tegai. They share the features of a fish-like tail with an upper body that somewhat resembles a female hominid. There is little visible difference between males and females. They have long hair-like extensions on their head and their front fins have evolved into arm-like limbs. While the origin of mermaids is unclear, their closest relative seems to be the coelacanth.
Atlessians are the most famous mermaids as they often come close to ships and shore, and are generally friendly to other species. Other species of mermaid are often described by their differences from Atlessians. Atlessians concentrate in the sunken city of Atlessium.
Sirens are named for their commonality to Siren Harpies. They too can produce a beautiful singing that has hypnotizing effects on other sentient species. They use this to lure ships into dangerous places or isolation so they can sink it and take the recourses. They look a lot like Atlessians except with a clear difference in color between their hominid and fish halves, making them look more attractive. They have also evolved air sacks on their chest to simulate boobs.
Orang Ikans are the smallest species of mermaid (the size of a cat) and are known for their rusty color. They are nomadic in nature and move in large groups through the open seas.
Edammers live mostly around the coast of Zilverrijk. They are the most advanced of the mermaids and use advanced tools and weapons to protect their cities and thrive. They look a lot like Atlessians except bigger. Some people think they are the same species, just different in technological advancement.
The Ningyo are the most northern species of mermaid and their whole upper half is covered in mermaid ‘hair’ to combat the colder waters. They are more ape-like than human-like in their faces and it was for a long time thought that they were more animal than sentient being. This was however proven false by the Ipponese explorer Fuko Hamato, who lived near them for four years.
Selkies are the most magical of the mermaids. They have found a way to live on land for years using their strong magic. They sometimes disguise themselves as sentient land species and pursue relationships with them. This is dangerous for the mermaids as being discovered could have a very negative outcome. While some find partners that continue to love them even as a mermaid, some partners freak out. In the worst cases a mermaid can be executed or imprisoned for marital fraud. It is impossible to say how many selkies have infiltrated the many societies as only few are ever discovered.
Atargatians are special for having two fins between their hominid and fish halves that resemble legs. These legs can feel and move, but are not strong enough for Atargatians to stand on. Some stories however claim that some Atargatians could stand on their ‘legs’ and walked into coastal towns to kidnap children. This remains unproven.