Shellycoats are considered to be relatively harmless; they may mislead wanderers, particularly those they think are trespassing upon the creature's territory, but without malice. A common tactic of a shellycoat would be to cry out as if drowning and then laugh at the distracted victim.
As described above, the shellycoat shares many of the traits of the Brag, Kelpie and Nix.
A pück [home-sprite] served the monks of a Mecklenburg monastery for thirty years, in kitchen, stall and elsewhere; he was thoroughly good-natured, and only bargained for 'tunicam de diversis coloribus, et tintinnabulis plenam.' [a "parti-coloured coat with tinkling bells"] In Scotland there lived a goblin Shellycoat, and we saw (p. 465) that the dwarfs of the Mid. Ages also loved bells [schellen; and schellenkappe is Germ. for cap and bells]. The bells on the dress of a fool still attest his affinity to the shrewd and merry goblin (fol, follet); see Suppl.