Chicago police investigators confirm alligator in lagoon

Chief Communications Officer Anthony Guglielmi confirmed that authorities spotted the gator and that a state reptile specialist put the alligator at somewhere between four to five feet long

Chief Communications Officer Anthony Guglielmi confirmed that authorities spotted the gator and that a state reptile specialist put the alligator at somewhere between four to five feet long

Spokeswoman for Chicago Animal Care and Control Jenny Schlueter told FOX32 that the mysterious alligator may have been a pet that was released into the wild after getting too big.

Horst-Ruiz said she was initially in disbelief upon hearing a man say he spotted the animal as she readied for a Sweet Sixteen photoshoot in the park, she told Block Club Chicago.

Bob believes that as the "gator gets more comfortable, he will start to explore the lagoon, making it more hard to locate and catch him".

It "will probably be scared and try to hide", she added.

Police said the alligator will be "humanely trapped" and relocated to a zoo for evaluation. This will cause the alligator to become afraid and submerge into the water.

The investigation into the alligator's whereabouts and who potentially released him into the lagoon are still ongoing, according to authorities.

'It was close to the pier at first, then went further into the middle of the lagoon, ' she explained to the publication.

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Visitors to the Humboldt Park lagoon are being asked to keep a distance from the water until authorities rescue the gator. An employee at the lagoon said the order has been in effect for a month and a half.

What started as a few eyebrow-raising photos turned into an intensive search as the Chicago Police Department and the city's animal control raced to find the animal.

If the alligator is not captured by sundown, a "trained animal specialist" will place humane bait traps, police said. We've notified animal control but have not confirmed this is a legitimate call as of yet.

This is not the first instance of an alligator let loose in the Chicago area.

Another witness said he "clearly" saw the gator with its eyes above the water and speculated that the animal had been ditched there by its previous owner. Authorities said the alligator wouldn't have survived for another couple weeks.

Temperatures in Chicago on Wednesday were hovering above 30 C, the range in which alligators are most active, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. One, about 3 feet long, was found near the 3200 block of North Rockwell Street.

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