The gator, which was first spotted Tuesday morning, has become a sensation, drawing crowds of onlookers and even getting the attention of his namesake.
Just landed and found out I gotta alligator— Chance The Rapper Album in July (@chancetherapper) July 10, 2019
There are five already set out on the lagoon in hopes of luring the gator in with the smell of rat bait.
Alligator Bob with the Chicago Herpetological Society has floated the idea of trying to lure the gator with sound as well.
"One of the theories we're using is an underwater speaker that will have the baby cries in a certain area," said Alligator Bob. "See if over a certain amount of time the local alligator hears it and is old enough to respond."
The Chicago Park District put out an advisory about the gator, placed temporary restrictions on park usage, and released safety guidelines during the search for the reptile. Park visitors have been instructed not to swim, canoe or fish in the lagoon; keep their distance from the lagoon edge, including grassy areas, as alligators are often located along the water's edge; stay at least 30 feet away from the alligator if you see it and back away slowly; do not feed the alligator; keep pets away from the water's edge as they are the size and shape of common alligator prey; and to not throw things or harass the alligator.
Experts believe it has been in the lagoon for less than a week, and is used to being fed by its owner. It apparently hasn't started hunting any local animals, but will soon.
It is a misdemeanor to have a pet alligator in the state of Illinois, and it is also illegal to release a pet into a public park.
A Chicago police investigation into who released the alligator is ongoing.