One gator gentrifying
July 10, 2019 7:24 AM   Subscribe

A four foot long alligator has been spotted in Chicago's Humboldt Park Lagoon. In the face of significant public interest, the Chicago PD gently discourages amateur reptile hunters from attempting a citizen's arrest.
posted by merriment (35 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
 
My husband has been mocking the sensationalist local news reporting of this mercilessly -- he's from Florida, and this is just a "small" gator -- but as a native of Chicago I'm like, "Shut up and let me enjoy the alligator mania!"

("Why are you excited about this?" "There's an alligator in Humboldt Park!")
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 7:34 AM on July 10 [8 favorites]


Finally, the long-promised day when Chicagonians will begin to turn into alligators(or possibly crocodiles) has arrived!
posted by GenjiandProust at 7:34 AM on July 10 [1 favorite]


I can't get to the park today, but maybe I'll see him later.
posted by Johnny Assay at 7:40 AM on July 10 [17 favorites]


Further social media frivolity: Facebook event and obligatory (but amusing) Twitter parody account.
posted by merriment at 7:45 AM on July 10


With climate change, we’ll be seeing more invasive species (eg, released pets) in places you wouldn’t expect. It’s cute when it is a colorful duck, but less so when there are big teeth.
posted by Dip Flash at 7:55 AM on July 10 [1 favorite]


There was one captured in St. Louis yesterday too.
posted by Jacob G at 7:56 AM on July 10 [1 favorite]


We have had multiple gators that had to be removed from various rivers in Pittsburgh this summer. Like, two in one day at one point. STOP RELEASING YOUR EXOTIC PETS, YA JAGOFFS!
posted by soren_lorensen at 8:04 AM on July 10 [6 favorites]


There was one captured in St. Louis yesterday too.

Damn Chicago, stealing our thunder since 1870.
posted by khaibit at 8:13 AM on July 10 [7 favorites]


I really, really, do not have time or energy to spend on acquiring a convincing alligator prop and finding a way to sneak it past the life-guards into the deeper areas off Chicago's public beaches. But, it sure is tempting.

(To be clear, keeping undomesticated animals as pets is shitty. Releasing exotic pets is arguably more shitty. It's not funny for the alligator. But, it is funny for everyone else.)
posted by eotvos at 8:18 AM on July 10 [4 favorites]


This quote:

“It is kind of scary, but who knows how many other types of animals are at the beach. Gotta walk by faith.”

Amen, sister.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 8:31 AM on July 10


who knows how many other types of animals are at the beach

lol yeah like chicago pd frex
posted by poffin boffin at 8:41 AM on July 10 [7 favorites]


I went by last night and all of the neighbors were out watching the lagoon. I sat on the other side from the boathouse where all of the news cameras and a larger crowd of on-lookers were and everyone who walked by asked if we’d seen it yet.

I’m surprised it’s real, the first I heard of it, it sounded like a joke. It’s crazy to think someone just let it loose, the lagoon it’s in is connected to another lagoon they fill every year for kids to swim in, that has been packed full of people every day.
posted by jeweled accumulation at 8:43 AM on July 10 [1 favorite]


I’m surprised it’s real, the first I heard of it, it sounded like a joke.

Heh. Not unheard of. Toronto had a two-foot caiman loose in a park pond a few years back.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 8:49 AM on July 10


Someone say my name?
posted by humboldt32 at 8:56 AM on July 10 [1 favorite]


I think we should introduce the Humboldt alligator to the Hyde Park parrots.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 9:00 AM on July 10 [2 favorites]


I like that Alligator Bob, Chicago's volunteer alligator wrangler, had to announce that no he is in fact not single. Clearly a preemptive rejection of Chicago Party Aunt.
posted by srboisvert at 9:15 AM on July 10 [8 favorites]


It’s cute when it is a colorful duck, but less so when there are big teeth.

Especially a colorful duck with big teeth...
posted by Greg_Ace at 9:26 AM on July 10 [1 favorite]


There was one in the river, I believe, in 2010.

But, ugh, I just want them to catch this guy and get him to some nice board certified reptile specialists who can make sure he's okay and move him somewhere where the winters won't kill him and cops will stop standing around, blaring the Jaws theme at him.
posted by crush at 10:27 AM on July 10


“Pets get loose in the park. There was guinea pigs for a while. They’ve been random canaries. But alligator is something completely different because it’s kind of predatory,” Rivers said.

I think alligators might be more than "kind of" predatory. Especially if you area guinea pig or random canary.
posted by pangolin party at 11:07 AM on July 10 [3 favorites]


are a guinea pig or random canary, I mean.
posted by pangolin party at 11:10 AM on July 10 [1 favorite]


Incidentally, "The Area Guinea Pigs" is the name of my new band.
posted by Greg_Ace at 11:38 AM on July 10 [4 favorites]


"There goes the neighborhood," said area guinea pig.
posted by merriment at 11:40 AM on July 10 [6 favorites]


Especially a colorful duck with big teeth...

Would you rather be bit by a colorful duck with 100 teeth or a colorful duck with horse teeth?
posted by GenjiandProust at 11:49 AM on July 10 [1 favorite]


Can I choose a colorful horse with no teeth?
posted by Greg_Ace at 11:51 AM on July 10 [1 favorite]


my understanding is that it's a little smaller than this one they found in the Chicago river...
posted by anem0ne at 12:08 PM on July 10


I’ve always wanted to put shark carcasses on local beaches and see what happens. The only thing stopping me was access to an actual shark carcass.
posted by misterpatrick at 12:11 PM on July 10 [2 favorites]


My husband has been mocking the sensationalist local news reporting of this mercilessly -- he's from Florida, and this is just a "small" gator -- but as a native of Chicago I'm like, "Shut up and let me enjoy the alligator mania!"

I know, right? Everyone outside of Chicago is sensationalist about gun violence in Chicago, the least they can do is let us be sensationalist about alligator violence in Chicago.
posted by davejay at 2:21 PM on July 10 [10 favorites]


All you need to take of that, Chicago, is a good python.
posted by porpoise at 2:54 PM on July 10 [1 favorite]


I don't know who started calling the gator Chance the Snapper, but I'd like to shake their hand.
posted by macadamiaranch at 6:11 PM on July 10 [9 favorites]


As a University of Florida graduate, I’m pleased to see our plan finally coming to fruition.

Go Gators!
posted by Abehammerb Lincoln at 7:05 PM on July 10


My Spanish conversation group tonight spent almost the entire time talking about "el caimán de Humboldt Park" ("Es fantastico!") and Alligator Bob's dating prospects.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 8:58 PM on July 10 [4 favorites]


I love everything about this story. Chance the Snapper even has fan songs!
posted by sldownard at 1:33 AM on July 12 [1 favorite]


When we were small (around 6 and 3 or maybe 7 and 4), I terrorized my little sister by convincing her that there were alligators in the fake stream at the bottom of the coal mine exhibit at the Museum of Science and Industry. So from then on every time went back, she would freak out and refuse to go in. So much so that a few years ago, decades after our family moved away, when I found myself back in Chicago on a trip and had the chance to visit the museum and found that the coal mine was still there - AND SO WAS THE UNDERGROUND WATER - I texted her a picture with a few 🐊🐊🐊 and found out that apparently the fear-mongering still worked.

All I'm saying is, um, maybe the joke was on me all along.
posted by Mchelly at 6:45 AM on July 12 [1 favorite]




They got him! Later, gator!
posted by merriment at 5:42 AM on July 16 [1 favorite]


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