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Chicago Alligator Still Evading Capture

It’s Day Four of the hunt for an elusive gator that has inspired a naming contest, a YouTube video and social media buzz.

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The quest to trap the alligator living in the Humboldt Park Lagoon has entered a fourth day.

Manuel Martinez

“Chance the Snapper” was still on the loose Friday.

A Chicago Police spokeswoman said there were no overnight reports of the elusive alligator being trapped in the Humboldt Park Lagoon. So it was Day Four of the hunt for the 4- to 5-foot reptile that has fascinated Chicagoans, drawing crowds to the lagoon since it was first spotted Tuesday.

A sort of gator mania has been building in Chicago this week.



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Visitors look out over the Humboldt Park Lagoon, hoping to spot the alligator living inside.

Manuel Martinez

The animal was dubbed Chance the Snapper in a Twitter poll done by Block Club Chicago, the local news outlet that first reported the gator’s presence in the lagoon.

A Chicago musician, Yendrys Céspedes, has written a song about the reptile — “El Cocodrilo de Humboldt Park” — and posted it on YouTube.

Gator T-shirts have cropped up, and there are multiple parody Twitter accounts where the gator posts messages.

A fake Facebook event that promises meet-and-greets with the gator has thousands of RSVPs.

It’s not the first time Chicago has been transfixed by an alligator story. The Chicago Tribune this week reported on a gator rage in the city more than 100 years ago.

Police and Chicago Animal Care and Control officials aren’t sure how the gator got into the lagoon. One theory is that the animal was a pet and was dumped there by an owner who didn’t want a growing reptile anymore.

If and when the gator is captured, officials say it will be taken to a zoo for a veterinary checkup.

Meantime, the reptile on Friday was enjoying another warm, sunny summer day in its watery domain.

WBEZ news intern Marley Arechiga contributed.

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